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Multiplying Leaders in Intercultural Contexts

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Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Grow the Edge of the Church

Focus on Groups

Reproduce Life

Find the Followers and the People Who Pass Things On

Develop People, Not Programs

Examine Ourselves

Book Outline

Chapter 2: Value Cultural Difference

Understand How Culture Affects Leadership

Adjust Our Approach according to Culture

Chapter 3: Investigate Leadership Dimensions of Culture

Gauge Power Distance

Research Paternalistic Expectations

Determine Tolerance for Uncertainty

Pay Attention to Context

Look at Groups

Explore Group Influence on Individuals

Learn with Humility

Chapter 4: Disciple Leaders Like All Other Disciples

Test Leaders First as Disciples

Identify Exemplary Disciples

Foster Continuing Growth

Remember That We Are Also Disciples

Chapter 5: Identify All the Leaders

Identify the Growing-Edge Leaders

Focus on the Majority

Chapter 6: Foster Biblical Leadership

Strengthen the 4 Cs—Community, Character, Clarity, Care

Apply Biblical Metaphors Carefully

Nurture Life in All Its Fullness

Promote One-Another Care

Cultivate Generosity

Chapter 7: Guard against Leaders’ Vulnerabilities

Research Vulnerabilities and Accountability

Model Self-Awareness

Chapter 8: Strengthen the Community (C1)

Keep Leaders in Their Communities

Look for Community Endorsement

Strengthen Community Decision-Making Processes

Include the Community in Leaders’ Development

Promote Community Values through Group-Based Learning

Chapter 9: Build Character (C2)

Strengthen Capacity for Pain-Bearing

Model Integrity and Transparency

Support God’s Forging of Christian Character

Be Examples

Chapter 10: Clarify the Community’s Purpose (C3)

Promote Clear Vision

Help Leaders Craft Collective Vision

Encourage Clear Communication

Encourage Vision Review

Chapter 11: Develop Care across the Community (C4)

Lift Up Carers

Nurture Healthy Relationships

Share Life Together

Coordinate Believers’ Gifts

Build the Local Community

Chapter 12: What Should We, as Developers, Do?

Build Relationships

Be Models

Research the Culture


Adjust Our Methods and Expectations


Become Reflective Practitioners

Chapter 13: Leadership-Development Principles

  1. Disciple Leaders Like All Other Disciples
  2. Select Leaders Who Are Endorsed by Their Communities
  3. Include the Community around the Leader and Strengthen It
  4. Develop the 4 Cs
  5. Connect Knowledge with Experience

Chapter 14: Putting Leadership-Development into Practice

Context 1—Pioneer church planting

Context 2—Movement of Multiplying Churches

Context 3—Churches in Contexts Where Pastors Are Expected to Attend Bible


Do Life with Leaders




Figures and Tables

Figure 1: A model for understanding culture (adapted from Hiebert, 2008, 32–33)

Figure 2: Variation between and within cultures in scheduling (Organized vs. Flexible)

Figure 3: Leadership types and estimated number of each type in a church movement of 10,000 people

Figure 4: The four critical characteristics of Christian leadership (4 Cs)

Figure 5: The 4 Cs of Christian leadership

Figure 6: Photos of shepherds in different parts of the world

Figure 7: Vision in linear time

Figure 8: Vision in cyclical time

Figure 9: Vision focused on the past

Figure 10: Making connections between life and theory

Multiplying Leaders in Intercultural Contexts
Recognizing and Developing Grassroots Potential
Evelyn and Richard Hibbert

Develop Leaders in Culturally Relevant Ways

Often, church planters, disciplers, and pastors struggle to identify grassroots leaders and develop them in their context. As leaders who want to develop other leaders, our task is to come alongside these leaders and learn and grow together with them.

Multiplying Leaders in Intercultural Contexts focuses on how to develop grassroots Christian leaders across cultures. These often unrecognized leaders mostly lead small groups at the growing edges of the church. They are ordinary people who faithfully share Christ amid the demands of daily life. Another focus of the book is shaping the character of developers as they humbly walk beside leaders in the leaders’ community.

The authors use the four C’s of Christian leadership—Community, Character, Clarity, and Care—to weave together research, experience, and practical application to show how these characteristics are expressed across different cultures. The book then discusses five principles, illustrated in common settings, for an intentional process that develops leaders and their communities collectively. Take the next step now in developing yourself and others in the task of leading Jesus’s church wherever that might be.


  • So much experience, thought, and Bible-tempered practical wisdom has been poured into this book to make it a treasure chest of help for rookie and veteran cross-cultural workers. The strength of the book—and its thesis—is that it insists that a leader is every bit a disciple as the disciples he or she is to lead.
    Ross and Lyndal WebbBible translators for over 30 years, Wycliffe Australia
  • The key to reaching the nations is to see movements of reproducing churches, and the key to healthy church planting movements is the development of adequate numbers of leaders. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to see godly leaders equipped and able to shepherd growing churches among unreached peoples.
    Julyan LidstoneAmbassador, Muslim Ministries of OM
  • This book calls all those involved in developing leaders to consider context, create space, learn to listen, and continue their own discipleship journey. Add this book to your reading list as it calls us to live the everyday faith journey in discipling, being discipled, and growing community.
    Cathy HinePhD; Co-Founder and Coordinator, When Women SpeakDirector, Interserve International
  • Evelyn and Richard call us to an incarnational style of leadership development that goes beyond simple method. This book challenges cross cultural workers to understand leadership formation in the host culture and adapt training appropriately. We especially liked the 4Cs (Community, Character, Clarity, Care) and the four chapters where they were fleshed out. Multiplying Leaders is a must read for any cross-cultural trainer who desires to equip local leadership. Don’t formulate your strategic plan until you have read this book!
    Carolyn and Jerry Moyer(Carolyn) Executive Director, World Team Australia (Jerry) Director, World Team Europe
  • Perhaps the most difficult and most important step in cross-cultural church planting is leadership development. I once heard a pastor from the Middle East say to a group of missionaries, “We need missionaries who want to work themselves out of a job ASAP!
    Let the nationals be the pastors.” Multiplying Leaders in Intercultural Contexts provides church planters with a practical guide for this important aspect of church planting. The emphases on the influence of culture on leadership and developing leaders at all levels of ministry are important contributions of Multiplying Leaders that are often overlooked in books on leadership development. Evelyn and Richard write from years of experience in cross-cultural ministry and have provided the missionary community a valuable church-planting resource.
    Ed Grudier, DMinDirector of the Centre for Cross-Cultural Mission, Sydney Missionary and Bible College
  • There is no shortage of books on leadership these days, but there are not many on the related intercultural issues, and those publications rarely achieve what this book does.
    Evelyn and Richard start from an acknowledgement that leadership is not something we export or install; leadership is part of human life and every culture has forms and levels of leadership. This practical book explores how to identify and develop leaders within their cultural context. Because we all have our own cultural lenses, it is easy for foreign workers to look for what is most aligns with their own expectations when identifying leaders and to facilitate training accordingly.
    The book is packed with real life examples and helps us to re-examine our expectations and understanding of what leadership is, how we can best nurture it and, of course, how to best apply biblical principles.
    Colin Bearupcross cultural worker and trainer for over 35 yearsVisiting Lecturer, SMBC and the Nazarene Theological College in the UKAuthor, Clues to Africa, Islam, and the Gospel and Calling on the Prophets

Additional Details

  • Pages: 176
  • Publisher: William Carey Publishing
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Publish Year: 2023
  • ISBN: 9781645084457
  • Vendor: William Carey Publishing