Learning from the Church Bulls

According to the politics of an elk herd, there is room for only one bull in a harem of cows--especially during the rut. It is, of course, the biggest and the baddest bull who gets the harem. The lesser males are consigned to drift together in small herds or to operate on the fringe of the main herd or to wander aimlessly looking for a harem of their own.

In the universe of elk, there can be only one lead bull.

But what happens when you've been hired to be the lead bull, and you're only a spike? When several other bulls in the herd are bigger than you?

RIVALS INSTEAD OF ALLIES

Seminaries train pastors more to be craftsmen than to be leaders. No doubt pastors are the best skilled in their congregation at the technical side of ministry: preparing sermons, giving pastoral care, administering the sacraments. But being a pastor is more than applying a set of skills; it also includes leadership.

Here's the problem: many pastors bump up against lay people who are better leaders than they are. These ...

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