“The church lives amidst a world of conflict. The world is searching for solutions. The church’s ability to handle its own conflict properly will influence its own vitality and its impact on the world.” –Robert Kirkland (taken from Communication and Conflict management in Churches and Christian Organizations)
This month we continue to build upon last month’s theme, communication, by adding a new element; conflict management. The very vast majority of all conflict is the direct result of ineffective communication. This month’s book, Communication and Conflict Management in Churches and Christian Organizations, explores the complex processes of communication and conflict management, and how the dynamics of conflict resolution and communication evolve in the Christian organization. Authors Kenneth Gangel and Samuel Canine open the book by surveying different communication models and exploring the nature and process of communication. They discuss the process of “identifying or defining” the cause of a dispute and the importance of simply being able to articulate the conflict. Once the conflict has been defined, the authors explore conflict management and resolution by revisiting the communication process, patterns that emerge in communication and conflict, and the purpose and nature of conflict. The goal is to take that information and use it to understand organizational conflict and use specific strategies and tactics to prevent, resolve, and manage conflict.