Dr. Ray Ellis, Director of Church Consulting Network FMCNA
Consultant Convections



The value and effectiveness of a local church consultation and coaching varies according to church size, setting, condition, abilities, and preferences.  Only particular assumptions and objectives from the following may be appropriate.


  1. God is pleased when churches are healthy and grow and reproduce.
  • The Great Commission is best carried out by growing and reproducing local churches.  Growth and reproducing disciples and congregations are signs of good health.
  • God Provides for the health and growth of local churches by equipping them with gifted leaders and members with spiritual gifts for ministry.
  1. Local Churches and Leaders evidence certain needs.
  • Local churches tend to turn inward and often resist goal-oriented and growth-directed activities.
  • Local leaders often fail to observe trends, focus on growth goals, or target responsive populations for evangelism.
  • The position of senior pastor requires special support to cultivate good church health.
  • The pastoral staff often lacks mutual understanding of the organizational skills needed for their current job assignments.
  1. Consultants fulfill a legitimate and vital role in local church life.
  • God uses gifted and trained consultants/coaches as agents of renewal.  Their efforts enhance the supernatural operation of the Holy Spirit, who is already working in every congregation.
  • Churches and their leaders encounter dilemmas that often require outside help.
  • Due to their greater objectivity, external consultants can more accurately assess a situation than can those internal to the church.
  • Consultation fees are appropriate to the service rendered, and they increase the impact of the consultation.
  1. When done in correct process, the local church consultation facilitates solutions to growth barriers and maximizes growth potential in the local church.
  • Data gathering activities, including surveys, interviews, and research into church history, are, in themselves, interventions and therefore potentially therapeutic.
  • Properly conducted data gathering will guide staff and leadership through a discovery process and prepare them for change.
  • Permission to move ahead with solutions and implementation of action plans result from a mutually-held perception of root problems and possible solutions.
  • Commitment to some form of accountability or continuation process will enhance a church’s capacity to achieve its desired outcomes.


1.   Enhance the overall health and growth of local churches.

  • Stimulate spiritual awakening where conversion, repentance, and restitution may occur, restoring unity and love.
  • Affirm those programs and leaders that contribute to health; supplement weakness and probe blind spots.
  • Reduce tension in relationships by teaching new communication skills.
  • Encourage numerical expansion and multiplication
    • Develop and implement strategies that result in tangible evidence of new disciple making, convert growth, numerical growth, and multiplication of cell groups.
    • Help the church identify responsive target populations and develop programs to reach them.
    • Assist in helping daughter congregations in sponsoring new congregations.
  • Provide adequate diagnosis and direction.
  • Describe the church’s current situation ~ including the key hindrances preventing growth ~ in a way that is clear, concise, and agreed on by the church leaders.
  • Provide a range of options that are workable within the means of the particular church.
  • Guide leaders to form long-range plans with specific recommendations for future programs and insure that the church has adequate facilities and staffing to support the plans.
  • Provide documentation that can serve as a benchmark, useful for measuring progress at a future date.