Participative Leadership In Relation To Seventh-Day Adventist Church’s Growth In Kilifi County, Kenya
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This research set to explore participative leadership in relation to SDA Church‟s growth in Magarini Sub-county, Kilifi County, Kenya. Part of SDA‟s policy recognizes that authority rests in the entire membership. However, the situation on the ground is different since ordinary members are not allowed to participate in leadership. The research sought first, to examine the extent of members‟ inclusivity in leadership to enhance growth; second, to explore the causes and analyze the effects of lack of participatory leadership thus correlating members‟ involvement in leadership and church growth. SDA leadership style is exposed to forces and is affected by factors that undermine church growth. Team Leadership Model was considered an appropriate theoretical orientation for this study in order to highlight constant team analysis and improvement to cultivate church growth. The study adopted the descriptive survey design. To generate data, questionnaires were administered, besides FGD Guide and observation schedule. Nine SDA Churches took part in the study out of which 287 respondents satisfactorily participated. Data generated from field research were presented and analyzed as per the research objectives. It was observed that few members involved themselves in evangelism and opening of Sabbath schools respectively. However, not all Churches had up to date registers. Churches lacked serious Bible study divisions. Members and leaders lacked knowledge on team management. Obstacles to effective communication and socio-economic factors related to gender and family issues were prevalent. Leaders should work in groups by clarifying group roles and initiating more team independence, by taking actions that are goal-focused and which satisfy needs. They should resist forces that lead to exclusive leadership. Further, they should use a combination of various practices of leadership such as prayer life, Bible study, seminars/workshops, conducting time-frame schedules, visitation of members and attending revivals. Participative leadership motivates people and encourages them to be involved in activities; it engages in decision- making necessary for the growth of the church. It calls for team effectiveness where members manage activities corporately, respect church‟s beliefs and counsels, share information, deliberate on issues and agree before implementation of activities to enhance church growth.