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A “Must Read” On Leadership

May 25, 2017

Every so often a new book appears on the topic of leadership that adds significantly to ongoing thought and conversation. LEADING WITHOUT POWER: 9 Steps Toward Non-Coersive Ministry Leadership by Mark Oestreicher (The Youth Cartel, 2017) is such a book. Its small size, only 129 pages is deceiving in terms of insights,impact and application points.

Drawing on decades of youth ministry experiences in local churches as well as his high level leadership of Youth Specialties and The Youth Cartel Mark utilizes the power of story to underline and illustrate his nine “metaphysical job titles, including Competency Facilitator, Champion of Hope, Contextualization Czar and Collaboration Guide. The book begins with two essential questions, “In What Ways Do I Have Power In My Role? and In What Ways Do I Lack Power?” (p. 17) These questions are the foundation of the thesis of the book ,  We like power most of our collective understanding of leadership is hierarchical and authoritative  and ministry leadership should be marked by leading with out power. The remainder of the book unpacks what this looks like in all ministry contexts but especially in youth ministry.

For too long ministry has simply uncritically accepted cultural definitions and practices that have impeded the testimony of the gospel. Under the prophetic call to rethink our basic assumptions people like Mark Oestreicher can point the way to a better future. Read This Book!

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