A community is like a ship; everyone ought to be prepared to take the helm. — from An Enemy of the People, by Henrik Ibsen, 19th-century Norwegian playwright

This workshop distinguishes between power and authority, and between leadership and management. The group explores the implicit and explicit expectations of a congregational leader.

Parts of this workshop invite playfulness to ease participants' anxiety about the responsibilities of leadership. Other activities offer space for deep individual and group reflection on what it means to be a leader.


This workshop will:

  • Provide a framework for participants to examine the complex expectations of a person in a congregational leadership role
  • Apply definitions of power and authority to a congregational leadership position
  • Demonstrate the difference between management and leadership
  • Provide opportunities for participants to apply concepts about power, authority, management and leadership to their experiences as congregational leaders.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Understand power as the ability to achieve a desired outcome
  • Understand authority as power given in exchange for meeting implicit or explicit expectations
  • Identify some of the many factors, internal and external, which influence or support a congregational leader
  • Be introduced to Gil Rendle's distinction between management and leadership
  • Reflect deeply on their own experiences of power and authority, management and leadership, as congregational leaders
  • Laugh to relieve any anxiety about being a leader!

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