Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)



First Advisor

Charles Conniry, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Paul Shelton, Ph.D.


The problem addressed in this paper is: How can the decision-making process for business meetings in First Denver Friends Church be a process dependent upon paying attention to Christ, understanding His direction, and following in holy obedience? This problem will be addressed by proposing a model for decision-making in which the corporate discernment of God's direction and the corporate affirmation of obedience to that discerned direction take place in an environment of worship. Decision-making in the local church requires paying attention to Christ, our Head, then following His direction. Worship is the means by which a congregation attends to Christ. Therefore, a model for congregational decision-making in which the principle activity is paying attention to Christ will be an exercise in worship. The biblical norm for discerning the will of God for the Church is the corporate affirmation of that direction. Therefore, a model of decisionmaking in the local church founded upon paying attention to Christ and following His direction will include the corporate affirmation of God's direction discerned within the context of worship. Making decisions by corporate discernment within the context of worship has a biblical antecedent, a historical precedent, and has been endorsed by contemporary research. Chapter Two lays the biblical and theological foundation that paying attention to Christ, understanding His direction, and responding in holy obedience are normative practices in biblical church leadership. The Quaker decision-making method is explored in Chapter Three as a historical, practical application of the biblical and theological principles of the preceding chapter. The Quaker decision-making model functioned within a culture of listening. This culture of listening is defined in Chapter Four, especially in terms of its relevance to leadership. Finally, a viable model for a discernment-based decision-making process in an evangelical Friends church is described in Chapter Five.

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