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NAMB launches Next Step Leader for pastors


ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) – Pastoring a church has never been an easy job – preparing sermons, counseling church members through difficult circumstances, managing the day-to-day business of the church. Yet, 2020 brought a whole new set of challenges as pastors had to navigate through a global pandemic, racial tension and a widening divide in the culture.

The North American Mission Board (NAMB) announced Wednesday (Sept. 16) the start of a new, free resource for pastors called Next Step Leader through a partnership with ministry coach Will Mancini.

“Next Step Leader is a breakthrough process that helps each pastor do more of what he does best for the benefit of others,” Mancini said. “So, it has a dual sense of knowing self and being the person God made you to be and also it’s about being able to get more done with your life and your calling at the same time.”

Mancini said even before COVID-19, many pastors reported feeling tired. Then, once the uncertainty of the pandemic hit and seriously affected church gatherings, pastors encountered new, difficult decisions every single day.

“Pastors share with me that they are struggling with the rapidly changing culture and the ever-challenging dynamic of disciple-making in a season when even the most committed churchgoers are attending church less,” Mancini said. “Now, add to that the craziness and dislocation of everything that has happened to our church gatherings during COVID. This is a critical moment to rethink and innovate.”

Pastors who sign up online for Next Step Leader will receive a free copy of Mancini’s book, Younique, as well as short, bi-weekly articles that will help them clarify their unique, God-given vision. The book and the sessions will be designed to help pastors develop a deeper self-awareness and establish rhythms that combat burnout.

“At the North American Mission Board, we want to come alongside and resource pastors in a way that will help them lead their churches in evangelism,” NAMB president Kevin Ezell said.

Mancini said he likes to challenge leaders “to consider how the Great Commission has been lived out functionally in our churches: ‘Go into all the world and make more worship attenders, baptizing them in the name of small groups and teaching them to volunteer a few hours a month.’ Jesus didn’t give His life for that.”

The goal for the church, Mancini said, should be making active disciples who are living lives of joy and making disciples every day of the week.

“We at NAMB are excited that God’s going to use Will Mancini and the Next Step Leader process to help a lot of pastors,” said Johnny Hunt, NAMB senior vice president of evangelism and leadership. “We are looking forward to how God is going to use Next Step Leader in the lives and ministries of so many pastors.”

To learn more about and register for NAMB’s Next Step Leader process, visit NextStepLeader.net.

Brandon Elrod writes for the North American Mission Board.