NOW Leadership Initiative (NOW L.I.) A Good Northwest Leader Is…

Sep 10, 2021

We know what a strong and thriving ministry looks like in the Northwest. We also know that it takes qualified, passionate, trained individuals to lead these ministries… pastors and lay people who share the Good News of Jesus with our communities and congregations. And we want to raise up more of them. The

NOW Leadership Initiative (NOW L.I.) was created as a way to do just that. This brand new study is based on what we know our congregations and members are looking for in a leader, as it uses real info obtained from a survey to the NOW District email communication lists in 2019. A total of 279 people responded by saying they want leaders who are Biblically-literate, compassionate, respected in the community, humble, approachable, etc. These are the kinds of people to raise up into leadership roles. And we are seeking everyone’s help in finding and encouraging these leaders.

The NOW L.I. officially launched when President Linnemann and his Executive Assistant Dust Kunkel presented the study to the Circuit Visitors at their retreat Aug. 31-Sept. 1.

The Circuit Visitors will be helping to catalyze the use of this resource with the pastors, leaders, and congregations within their circuits. Everyone across the district is encouraged to download the guides and make time to study the pages. This is an on-the-ground effort to reach new laborers for the Lord’s harvest.

AT A GLANCE WHAT is the NOW L.I.? The NOW L.I. is a united effort in the NOW District to identify and prepare God’s people to be laborers for his harvest. In this resource are ways to raise up and support a new generation of passionate individuals to step into a leadership role based on what we know our ministries are looking for. These are men and women of all kinds – some of whom will go on to serve in professional capacities.

HOW did it begin? The foundation of this study started in 2019, when everyone signed up on the NOW District communication lists was emailed a survey asking for help identifying the attitudes, skills/behaviors, and abilities/gifts in healthy church leaders. A total of 279 people responded. What we learned is that ministries are looking for workers who are (among many other things) faith-driven, adaptable, genuine, Biblically-literate, compassionate, multi-generational communicator, listener, person of prayer, trustworthy, speak of Jesus easily, empathetic, humble, seeks God’s wisdom, organized, able to teach, and respected in the community.

NEXT Steps The NOW District staff used the survey results to begin a collaborative effort with our West Coast partners at CNH and PSD to find real ways to encourage new leaders. In the spring of 2021, all three district presidents met together – along with each of their missions/executive assistants, and one additional leader from their district. They came out of this meeting with real actionable steps. It was from this meeting that a draft of the NOW L.I. study was formed. Rev. Mike Von Behren from Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Spokane, Washington (also the NOW District Third Vice President and a cultivator for the NOW Start Network) was the additional leader selected by President Linnemann to attend. He developed the initial draft of the NOW L.I. study.

GOALS The goal of the NOW L.I. is to raise up new professional church workers and lay leaders from local settings. Many gifted individuals may not even be considering a leadership role – But if leaders work to recognize and raise up gifted men and women from among us, the next generation will be inspired to answer the call.

HOW do I get started on this initiative?

Download the guides here. Listen to the podcasts. And then begin to intentionally seek out and encourage those in your midst. Take note of those in your life who possess the desired qualities and could serve as a leader, and then encourage them to get connected through one of the starting points in our District’s leadership pipeline.

MORE Info You can find more info on our website: NOW Leadership Initiative (NOW L.I.).  

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