Dysfunctional Churches

I was reading through a number of articles at www.batteredsheep.com. Some interesting and thought provoking articles on dysfunctional churches.

Here is one significant attribute of a dysfunctional church:

The key indicator is control oriented leadership, ministers who have a need to “lord it over the flock.” Abusive leaders demand submission and unquestioning loyalty. The person who raises uncomfortable questions or does not “get with the program” is cast aside.

Sounds familiar. So does this article.

4 replies
  1. Paula
    Paula says:

    Interesting yet disturbing topic…..it makes me wonder if just like a family are all churches not dysfunctional in some shape or form? Having come from an extremely corrosive church I wonder how one on the fringes really knows what is going on in a new church?

  2. Stephen Meyer
    Stephen Meyer says:

    Part of the problem is hearing about the problem when you can’t see it for yourself. It often makes people very defensive. Most people have no idea what church leaders are truly like, and why decisions are made, but they believe that because it’s a church that everything will always be fine. Very vulnerable.

  3. Geof
    Geof says:

    Thanks for your thoughts and the article on a tough topic. I have been working through my own thoughts and attitudes toward this topic. I would like to offer the following websites as additional resources.
    Article on types of conflicts and conflict resolution.:

    Various articles for Pastors on servant leadership, conflict, and other items. I recommend the 2 by Ken Newberger on conflicts.

    A checklist for identifying if conflict is an issue in your church:

    An article emphasizing the need to have relationships if a ministry is to sustain momentum. Although its focus is on men”™s ministry the principles are applicable to most if not all ministries.


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