Often churches base how they structure ministry programs on the following:
- tradition …. the way we’ve always done it
- imitation …. the way another church or ministry does it
- limitation …. the way the leader knows how to do it
- stipulation …. the way the leader is allowed to do it
A better approach may be to let the structure grow out of a ministry assessment wherein you base what you do on how you can best meet the purpose of that ministry given the resources you have to work with. Of course, this process must be embedded in prayer, trusting God for wisdom and understanding to get you on the right path (Prov. 3:5-6).
Example of Determining the Best Structure for Ministry Programs
As an example, let’s consider Christian Education. We often have a number of programs in the church for this ministry. Within each of those programs we need a structure that best fits the purpose of each program. To determine what model to use, we need to consider the following factors:
The Students: how many people participate in the program and the age breakdown of those people
The Workers: how many workers you potentially have and what type of workers they are (i.e., leaders, teachers, helpers, etc.)
The Curriculum: how rigid you must be in using a certain curriculum and how adept leaders or teachers are at developing materials or adjusting curriculum to fit your setting
The Facilities: how many rooms you have to work with and what is the size and flexibility of each room
Your answers to the above factors will guide you in determining which model would work best in a given program.
For additional help with determining the best structure for this ministry, consider ordering the Christian Education Ministry Manual which looks at various models you might use in light of the above factors. It will also help you evaluate if you are using the best model for your programs.