Ron McManus is president of the
new Assemblies of God Center for Leadership and Church Development.
He spoke recently with Hal Donaldson, editor in chief.
Evangel: Where will this center
It is going to be a center without walls. There will be a phone
number where pastors and districts can call to access resources. There
will be a Web site. It will not be a building. We exist to serve entities
that are already in place.
Evangel: Why does the Assemblies
of God need this?
McManus: Our pastors need
more tools to effectively lead our churches and move forward. The center
will also provide resources and opportunities for lay ministry in the
Evangel: Describe what the center
McManus: First, we want
to be a clearinghouse for resources that pastors need. We will not create
all of those resources, but we will be a place where pastors can come.
We will be able to help them to know what is the best material on the
market in what they need.
Second, we will continue to offer
conferences and seminars for leaders and pastors in our Fellowship,
including district leaders and Headquarters leadership growth and development.
Third, we will exist as a catalyst
to the vision process for the Assemblies of God in the next 10 years
and as a resource to districts to help them lay out a game plan for
growth and development of their pastors and churches over a five- or
Fourth, we will focus on church
health and growth. We want to take plateaued and declining churches
and help to turn them around.
Evangel: What is happening now?
McManus: We have been working
with districts with the "Foundations of Leadership" program
for four years. We plan to expand from what weve already done.
We also want to connect the various ministries from Headquarters going
to our districts and churches from church planting to revitalization
to leadership development. The center will be a catalyst for what everyone
is doing, forming an umbrella for everything related to church health,
church growth and church leadership development.
Evangel: How do you think this
center will affect this Fellowship?
McManus: We recognize that
we have to prepare pastors to lead churches. If were going to
grow churches, we have to grow pastors. We also want to put tools in
the hands of pastors to grow and develop lay leadership to mobilize
believers in communities across this country to touch people with the
power of Jesus Christ.
Evangel: Could you summarize
what led you to this ministry?
McManus: I served at Headquarters
leading the workers training program for the Assemblies of God and that
is where my passion for leadership training began. In 1981 I accepted
a pastorate in Winston-Salem, N.C., with about 250 people and began
to implement what I believe are the biblical principles for church growth
and development. For 16 years we worked that plan and learned a great
deal about church health and growth and left a congregation of about
3,000 four years ago. I then ministered full-time with Equip, begun
by Dr. John Maxwell, and came alongside pastors and churches to help
them effectively do what God has called them to do. Last year I left
that position to work in partnership with denominations to revitalize
and turn churches around.
Evangel: If someone wants more
information about the center, what should they do?
McManus: They can call my
office here at Headquarters. In the next couple of months we will have
a link on the Assemblies of God Web site called "leadership.org".
Next year we will be sponsoring regional leadership conferences around
the country. The Web site will give information about that.