(44 Total References)
In Better Together Making Church Mergers ...
In Better Together Making Church Mergers Work Warren Bird calls David Raymond a "merger specialist".
has personal experience with partnerships like this, and he
conducted detailed case studies of two Twin Cities collaborations, one based on the cluster model and one using the parish model.
has a passion for successful partnerships and an awareness of some not-obvious pitfalls that these partnerships can face.
has been closely involved in shepherding two mainline multisite mergers.
David Raymond of ...
David Raymond of ChurchFuture, a consulting firm in Minneapolis, often works with mainline Protestant churches that are considering mergers.
In this type of merger, two or more small churches unite rather than consolidating with a larger franchise.
"They are typically in sharp decline," he
"They can't keep going."
Most of the churches he
works with are small - about 70-75 people.
All their attention is focused on survival, so they have little energy to reach out to their neighbors or serve their community.
"When you have that few people - you are chewing up everybody's resources just to keep the Sunday school running and the lights on," he
starts by asking the struggling church to think strategically about its ministry.
often asks, "What can we do to reach out and serve more people in your community?"
"I always put it to the congregation this way," he
"Dave Raymond kept us focused ...
"Dave Raymond kept us focused as we faced our new realities.
In 1999 the Minneapolis Area Synod (ELCA) asked Dave Raymond to join the synod's Urban Planning Consultants team.
This team included pastors and lay people and who were trained in the Search Institute congregational planning methodology.
After the Urban Planning Consultants disbanded Raymond
continued to work with local congregations as a sideline to his
At the same time he did research and study in the field of congregational development.
Over the past 10 years Raymond
has provided coaching, consulting, training, and planning services to almost 70 congregations.
co-led workshops at Minneapolis Area Synod assemblies on worship, high performance congregations, and multiracial churches.
He co-chaired the Minneapolis synod's effort to train congregations in the use of demographic data, and served as a trainer in congregational collaboration for the Florida Bahamas Synod of the ELCA.
In 2002 and 2005 he
represented the Minneapolis Area Synod at the ELCA's national Evangelism Leaders Network.
He is an ELCA-trained coach in Natural Church Development.
Raymond was a co-founder and early president of Seward Redesign, a non-profit housing developer that started in 1972 as a partnership between Trinity Lutheran Congregation and a neighborhood organization.
is still strong today, 40 years later.
Raymond has an MA in American Studies from the University of Iowa.
After a career in real estate management, finance and development he
now owns a human services business located in downtown Minneapolis.
He occasionally serves as a consultant to other small businesses.
is motivated by a conviction that we are called to share God's unconditional love for us as shown in Jesus Christ.
You can call Dave
at 612-823-0526 or send a note to Dave@ChurchFuture.com to discuss how ChurchFuture services might work in your situation.
"David Raymond, a skilled ...
"David Raymond, a skilled consultant and caring churchman was able to effectively lead our congregation and our local cluster of congregations into a vision for mission and ministry that we could own and develop using the tools he pro-vided during his sessions with us.
He carefully and skillfully enabled us to discover together the resources we had in order to meet the common goals we established in a process that was framed by open, honest, and mutually caring conversation.
David truly made it possible for us to do the work that we wanted and needed to do together without pressure or pushing his own agenda."
David Raymond and Pastor Dennis Alexander from the conference staff led this effort.
is a co-leader for a similar effort by the Minneapolis Area Synod called Learn Lead Launch
See www.learnleadlaunch.com for more information.
In partnership with the Florida-Bahamas Synod ELCA, ChurchFuture
conducted four workshops for the 15 ELCA congregations in the Fort Lauderdale area.
The workshops focused on area mission strategies to show congregations how they can collaborate to be more effective.
The United Church of Christ
in New Brighton, a suburb of St. Paul, was about to embark on a building project.
The leaders wanted to be sure that the building planning was aligned with a renewed vision for the future, so they engaged Dave Raymond
as a coach.
led congregation-wide visioning, a congregation information session and a leadership retreat.
was engaged to help Augustana's leaders identify their options and come to a missional decision about their future.
Raymond served as the planning and financing consultant for Grace Center and continues to serve as a volunteer on the board.
Two small nearby Methodist churches formed Northeast United Methodist Church. with Raymond
as a co-consultant.
That church was featured in recent article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune
In South Minneapolis two churches formed Living Spirit United Methodist Church
in a 2009 restart merger that built on the multiracial commitment of one of the merging congregation.
was a co-consultant for in this merger.
of Grace Lutheran Church
in Pasco County, Florida, is a restart merger formed out of five churches, four of which were seriously struggling.
of Grace has two campuses, one at each end of the county.
In March, 2013 Spirit
of Grace and the Florida-Bahamas Synod ELCA asked Dave Raymond
to return to Florida to help the congregation reset its future direction.
Dave organized an on-line survey of congregation members that got 230 responses, and he spent four days working with Spirit of Grace leaders.
Westminster Presbyterian in New Port Richey, Florida is merging with St. Andrews Presbyterian, which is about 15 miles away in Dunedin, Florida.
The Westminster congregation dwindled in numbers over the years while St. Andrews has grown.
The Westminster facility will revitalize as a second campus for St. Andrews.
primary role is to help the churches develop a merger plan that enables both campuses to thrive.
David Raymond of ...
David Raymond of ChurchFuture
Over the past decade David Raymond from ChurchFuture has worked as a church consultant and coach with almost 70 ELCA, UMC, and UCC churches, individually and in clusters and often in partnership with denominational staff members and other consultants.
Through this experience ChurchFuture has learned how to help congregations uncover their shared vision and take steps to bring a brighter future into fruition.
"Dave is a very able leader of groups and always looks to hear all voices of those attending the meeting.
As a lay person and business owner Raymond brings a down-to-earth perspective together with a vision of what congregations can accomplish for the kingdom of God.
emphasis is on research-based coaching.
doesn't waste time with pointless exercises or re-plowing old ground.
has developed techniques to involve all members in the process and release their energy.
business background gives him an understanding of financial issues.
has used that understanding to help many congregations expand their financial resources and use them wisely.
The services page has more information about Raymond's background.
Sometimes the pathway to a brighter future involves partnership with other congregations.
has guided a number of church collaborations.
provides a web site, www.churchcollaboration.com , to share some of what we have learned.
was part of innovating the new concept of rebirth mergers.