Memories, Hopes, and Conversations Appreciative Inquiry and Congregational Change

ISBN-10: 1566992885

ISBN-13: 9781566992886

Edition: 2004

Authors: Mark Lau Branson
List price: $21.00
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Description: When First Presbyterian Church in Altadena, California, was asked to provide a mission study report for its pastor nominating committee, the congregation was afraid they would find themselves engaging in busy work and producing a report that would wind up in a file gathering dust. They then asked professor Mark Lau Branson to consult with them on writing this report. He invited them to join in a process of Appreciative Inquiry--a transformational organization change process--which resulted in a major shift in congregational conversations and a new sense of hope. Memories, Hopes, and Conversations recounts the experience of First Presbyterian and outlines a process that any congregation can utilize to harness the energies of the congregation at all levels of its common life. Branson first leads readers through the foundations of Appreciative Inquiry and bracingly explores biblical texts for understanding the practice in a faith context. He then outlines and illustrates a four-step process--Initiate, Inquire, Imagine, Innovate--that creatively employs constructive conversations and questions to evoke storytelling and spur imaginations. Branson persuasively demonstrates how concentrating on needs and problems can mire a congregation in discouragement and distract it from noticing innate strengths. By focusing on memories of the congregation at its best, members are able to construct "provocative proposals" to help shape the church's future. Grounded in solid theory and real-life practice, Memories, Hopes, and Conversations is a groundbreaking work of narrative leadership and the first book to apply the principles of Appreciative Inquiry to the lives of congregations.

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Book details

List price: $21.00
Copyright year: 2004
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Incorporated
Publication date: 6/1/2004
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 172
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.594
Language: English

Mark Lau Branson (MA, Claremont School of Theology; EdD, University of San Francisco) is the Homer L. Goddard Professor of the Ministry of the Laity at Fuller Theological Seminary where he teaches courses on congregational leadership and community engagement. He is the author of Memories, Hopes and Conversations: Appreciative Inquiry and Congregational Change.

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