Ministry Incubator’s affiliate Dr. Nate Stucky and the Princeton Farminary has been featured in TakePart, an online news & lifestyle magazine and social action platform. Nate, the director of the Princeton Farminary and an early Hatchaton participant, has seen his vision for grounding theological education in an agricultural setting come to fruition in a farm owned by Princeton Theological Seminary. You can read the article here. Stay tuned for more updates about exciting projects from our Ministry Incubator Affiliates.
Join us for a Hatch-a-thon on February 25-27, 2016 at Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center in Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. Join others who are nursing an entrepreneurial idea for youth ministry or the church in general, and who want to “test drive” the idea to see if it has legs! Register today or see http://www.lakejunaluska.com, for further information as well.
The future of youth ministry starts… with pie. Try Pie never wavers from its primary purpose—helping young people grow closer to Christ and their communities, one pie at a time—but they also soar where most missional entrepreneurs get stumped: they have genuinely integrated mission and business without cheapening either one. What an honor that Try Pie has chosen to partner with Ministry Incubators as they expand. We have learned so much from this joyous little ministry—which I am betting won’t be little for very long.
Are you nursing an entrepreneurial idea for ministry, but don’t know how to get it started (much less fund it)? Is your church ready to move a social enterprise idea down the field that funds other aspects of ministry? Could you use the wisdom of others to test-drive an idea for missional entrepreneurship–or are you just curious about what’s involved in starting a sustainable nonprofit or for-profit ministry? The Institute for Youth Ministry is partnering with Ministry Incubators to offering a Hatch-a-thon in March.
Ask the typical church leader what kind of software they use for managing their database, and, if you don’t get a blank stare, you won’t likely hear kind words.
The typical church is frustrated with its technology. But the anger is almost always misdirected. Here’s what happens:
The Church of St. Normal has a problem. Its records are out of date. People who should be getting communication aren’t. People who have specifically requested not to receive communications are.
Easy solution: The church buys a software program. They believe the software’s promise that it will be do what it says it does. The church makes a one-time purchase, uploads the software, and problem solved, right?
We all know that technology (and life) simply don’t work that way.
Here’s the crazy thing: The software does work. The software does exactly what it said it would do. What the software doesn’t do is actually solve the problem, because the problem, at its core, is not a software problem. What the software doesn’t (and can’t) do is ensure that the essential (non-software) systems are in place to actually solve the problem.
The problem is almost never a software problem. It’s almost always a system problem.
Single-issue, technical solutions almost never solve the deeply entrenched systemic problems that tie up an organization and keep it from tending to its first priorities.
Most non-profits don’t need help with technical fixes. Anyone can buy and install software. They need help knowing how to build the funnel, how to align responsibilities, how to establish accountability protocols. This is the kind of back-room detail work that few non-profit visionaries want to spend time on.
Though software can and often does save immense amounts of time eventually, software that actually solves problems will require a heavy, front-end investment as well as regular maintenance to ensure the software is doing more than simply multiplying inefficiencies.
Bill Gates was right when he said,
The first rule of any technology…is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify inefficiency.