Church growth is one of the necessary outcomes of Christ's, the Head's, and vision for the Church. “Make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19a ASV) begins today in the local church, with the Pastor as the leader, his co-workers, and members of his spiritual family who must grow before unbelievers are reached. Church communication is undeniably difficult to grasp and nearly impossible to master, but it is an essential skill for all churches to develop in order to thrive. Communication is not only a word but it is also a concept defined diversely and does not have undisputed meaning among researchers in this field. Its etymological background facilitates to dig the term in order to break through its sense. Thus, ‘communication’ derives from the Latin word “communis” which means “common” with its verb “communicare” which signifies “to share, impart or partake”.
Communication is a necessary component of human life. It is a dynamic process through which people comprehend and seek to be comprehended by others.
“Communication includes nearly every interaction between two or more persons... any transfer of information which has a direct and deliberate impact or influence upon a people's social, economic, or political welfare, has considerable impact on the people's thoughts and conducts,” writes Smith (2018) in. List of Theology Project Topics and Research Materials.
Communication has been at the heart of human dynamism since the beginning of time. Udeze (2015, p.37), stresses that “Communication is a necessary process for exerting influence over people and events, influencing people's behavior, persuading, implementing, changing, motivating, and leading.” Members of any human society seek to know and understand issues, proposals, plans, and policies being made for their own good and the role they are expected to play through communication. Through communication, people resolve major social issues that threaten mutual peace, unity, and progress in their society. Through mutual understanding between its super ordinates and subordinates, effective communication can help any organization develop a team spirit.
People who want to be understood by others must have and use “appropriate and effective” communication knowledge, skills, and motivation. “Lack of effective communication, which results in distorted understanding or complete misunderstanding among members of a society causes apparent societal dysfunction,” writes Okonkwo (2017, p. 255). Okonkwo (2017, p. 255) stated that “there can be no development at any level without communication”. Ile, (2001, p 281) wrote “...the formal organization is sustained on the infrastructure of communication”. When considering its use between two or more people, as well as its role within a family, a church, or an organization, this term has a lot of meaning and a lot of implications. Its meaning changes depending on whether it's about a person's relationship with an organization, an organization's relationship with the general public, or the type of relationship that exists between various organizations, such as secular, ecclesiastical, governmental, lucrative, non-profit, and so on..
Church communication research examines churches from a variety of angles, including member identification, leadership burnout (Chandler, 2019), and rhetorical studies. Communication mastery and diligent application can make a significant contribution to church growth. Effective communication is information exchange, not one-way communication. The communicator frequently receives feedback from the receiver, but this is not always the case. It will aid in the improvement of communication if the communicator allows for feedback. There are effective and ineffective feedbacks, however.
Leadership communication in the church is preferred when the leader has "the controlled, purposeful transfer of meaning by which leaders influence a single person, a group, an organization, or a community". The leader, of course, directs others through communication in order to get things done. He is a spokesperson who shares ideas, divulges information, and knowledge, and persuades others to follow him or walk in the path he demonstrates to be the best for their development or salvation. He directs, motivates, and inspires others to take action. In order to achieve his goals and complete his assigned missions, he communicates in a variety of ways; however, mastering three aspects of leadership communication is required. There are three types of communications: core, managerial, and corporate (Barrett, 2016).
Furthermore, academic literature evaluating the effectiveness of churches' strategic communication is even scarcer. Strategic communication is defined as an organization's "purposeful use of communication to achieve its mission". Studying churches’ use of strategic communication offers the potential to provide these unique organizations with practical applications for better communicating with their members as well as possibly attracting new members. In the church, communication necessitates the following:
Simply put, all divine communication serves to bring people closer to God. God had to communicate Himself to some men in order to unite people to Himself. God then chose to use men to whom He had revealed Himself as instruments to reveal Himself to others. As a result, every elder, deacon, teacher, preacher, coordinator, zonal leader, church worker, elderly woman, husband, father, or youth is a communication instrument in the church. When the church has effective communication, it means that the communication instrument is gradually taking on the nature of God. He becomes more united with God as he takes on the nature of God.
We must learn to communicate with one another in a way that is pleasing to God when dealing with one another. We must all learn to communicate, comprehend, and grow with one another. We, as communicators, must be careful not to use the mediums of communication (words, actions, reactions, appearance, moods, signals, fellowship, and prayers) to draw attention to ourselves, our beauty, our accomplishments, or our oratorical abilities, but rather to the cross of Christ, to Christ Himself.
Internal and external church growth is required for the Body of Christ in every denomination at the local, national, and international levels if Christ's order is to be carried out. There are numerous ways to make the completion of this commission a success. Effective leadership and communication, which are discussed in this study, are two techniques that can help churches grow significantly. However, in a local church, for example, it is appropriate that the coordinator of the implementation of church growth plans, in this case the Pastor, has a good leadership style and, as a result, leadership behaviour that will assist him in developing appropriate leadership traits. In order to communicate effectively with others, he should consider their emotional, psychological, and mental attitudes as he works with them. That will enable him to establish good organizational communication, which is required for successful external communication with existing mediums to relate to people and communicate the Word of God in order to grow the church as a result of Kingdom expansion.
If the pastor, as its administrator, does not use today's new Information and Communication Technology to network with others, the church as an organization may not achieve its mission. Because any church's administration revolves around the pastor, who, by virtue of his position, plans and executes the day-to-day operations of the organization, he must keep his subordinates informed of his plans and programs. In order to achieve the church's goals and objectives, the pastor must keep his congregation informed about their expected responses. Members of such a church organization will gladly cooperate if they are adequately and correctly informed about their role in the day-to-day operations of the church to which they belong. The pastor, as a church leader, may appreciate and embrace the use of modern communication to transport his church members, which will not only serve as a catalyst for the church's growth but also have an impact on the people, making the pastor's job easier. All of his directives will be followed by members who will be submissive and obedient.
“An effective (potential) organization is one that has found an effective leader (administrator) with good communication skills,” according to Udeze (2015, p. 37). This means that if an organization's goals aren't propelling or influencing its members' responses to achieve them, the leader's poor communication skills could be to blame. When it comes to the church, which is the subject of our study, it could be argued that poor morality output and poor responses to church goals are the result of poor or ineffective communication from the top. It's possible that the pastor (administrative head) didn't say exactly what he meant. In other words, what he said may not have been understood by his audience, as the intended meaning may have been lost in the transmission process.
“Alas... the indistinct utterances of many, concerning the dimness of thought in others with regard to Fundamental truth, has givens too much Occasion For Criticism (ridicule),” Howard says (1969).
In a nutshell, tracing how communication and administration have interacted from the beginning to the present suggests that there must be a connection between the two. So, how can communication contribute to effective church growth? The themes of church growth and communication will be used to answer this question in this study. To begin, church growth defines church, exemplifies church growth in the primitive church, and emphasizes its three core pillars. Second, Leadership examines leadership characteristics, styles, and behaviors. Finally, communication emphasizes the meaning and elements of communication, as well as the barriers to effective communication, as well as communication improvement and channels.