Following yesterday’s blog on the lack of diversity in the leadership of the Church of the Nazarene (with the exception of the Board of General Superintendents), I received a few less-than-supportive messages questioning how I could possibly believe that the Church of the Nazarene was not diverse or how I was simply wanting to be “politically correct” to suggest that we should be more diverse. I believe the term is “doubling down” (a gambling term that this life-long Nazarene shouldn’t know) and I confess that the accusations that I am less-than-loyal to a church that I deeply love may have gotten my “panties in a bunch.”
From the chart below (which admittedly might not be complete. If there are mistakes message me without calling me names, and I will adjust it. And for some reason I couldn’t justify the columns, I apologize for that too), you decide on the question of whether there needs to be more diversity at the Global Ministry Center and how “international” our leadership really is at the GMC.
Draw your own conclusions on how well our 1,917,022 non-USA/Canada members (out of a total membership of 2,550,374 members) is represented with the below list of leaders.
Once again for the record: I love the people on this list (I was pastor to some of them when I served as Lenexa Central’s pastor). I have no beef with the people or their qualifications or competence. I know they love Jesus and the Church of the Nazarene.
My issue is simply: If we are going to call ourselves an “international church” instead of an American Church that has some missions’ programs shouldn’t we be a bit more “international”?
Position Name Nation of Origin
General Secretary Gary Hartke USA
General Treasurer Keith Cox USA
Chief Financial Officer Bill Sawyer USA
Global Mission Director Vern Ward USA
President the Naz Foundation Ken Roney USA
Pres. The Fountry Pub Mark Brown USA
NYI Director Position Open
NMI Director Lola Brickey USA
SDMI Director Scott Rainey USA
Clergy Education/Ed Comm Dan Copp USA
General Editor Frank Moore USA
Regional Director Bob Broadbrooks USA
P&B Director Don Walter USA
Research Dale Jones USA
Church Planting Mark Bane USA
Communications Cort Miller USA
Multicultural Roberto Hodgson Guatemala?
Stewardship Position Open
IT Director Jeff Beam USA
HR Director Cindy Armstrong USA
BGS Office Manager Joy Hartke USA
NCM Director Nell Sweeden USA
Global Mission Personnel Marty Haskins USA
General Counsel Michael Thompson USA
JFHP Director Brian Helstrom USA
NCN News Chad Schnarr Canada
Editor of Holiness Today Charles Christian USA
I completely agree that some of these positions should be filled by folks from USA/Canada (maybe even more than half… I don’t know the “magic number” that would be fair and equitable). But can’t we agree that as a denomination we can do better? Can’t we agree that if heaven is going to be as diverse as Revelation 7:9 indicates (“I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb”), then our goal should be that we are a reflection of heaven too if we are praying for God’s kingdom to come and His will done on earth (at the GMC) as it is in heaven.
I love the Church of the Nazarene and pray that we can improve and truly be representative of heaven on earth.
Thank you for your willingness to approach a difficult topic with grace and truth. As you mentioned some responsibilities are fully the responsibility of the US and should be filled with capable people who understand those responsibilities and will be faithful to carry them out. I believe that God has also called capable people from other countries who understand global responsibilities and would faithfully carry them out if asked. This is not a simple task as there are many difficulties facing those from other countries working and serving in the US. However, it is an effort worth pursuing so that Christ’s church reflects the fullness of His redeemed people. I do not believe you are being critical of the past but rather seeking to cast a vision that would help us to move into a future that enables our brothers and sisters around the globe to fully participate and perhaps enhance our global church. Dr. Crocker recently spoke to our district assembly. His global perspective was greatly appreciated and deeply needed by the American church. May God help us to find other Godly leaders from around the globe to lead our church into a glorious future.
Thank you. I really am not trying to be critical. And I don’t want to come across as a “contrarian.” I love the CotN. Always have. Always will. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t raise questions and see her fulfill the Great Commission as Christ calls us!
Thank Rob, Kind of painful to see it in black and white like that. We have come a long way from the bad old days of all white, middle American males in the General Superintendency and we should celebrate that. We just can’t stop. We need to press on and let the whole church be represented at every level of leadership. Preach it, brother.
Thank you Craig.