Better Church Elders

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Better Church Elders

Better Church Elders

A New Zealand made online training resource for Eldership groups and Church Boards.

A series of teaching videos (15-20 minutes each) about Eldership, with robust group discussion questions included in a study guide for each video, a suggested ‘action’ to do as an eldership or board, and a reading as an ‘extra’. The video content is provided in an interview format led by Charles Hewlett (New Zealand Baptist National Leader) with experienced practitioners: viewers have the opportunity to hear from multiple voices adding to this topic of forming healthy eldership and church board teams.

The idea is for Eldership/Board groups to work through these training videos together, perhaps one a month for six months: setting aside 40 minutes at the start of normal Elders meetings to watch a video and discuss the questions: applying the content to their local context. Another approach would be to have a retreat day together (perhaps with some other church eldership groups), where all videos are watched, interspersed with interaction and discussion. The video series could also be a resource for prospective elders and board members to watch before they join the team.

Thank you to everyone who has purchased this video series. Your support has enabled more resources to be created through the Carey Centre for Lifelong Learning. However, with it coming up to its 3-year anniversary we have decided to make this series a freely available resource to enable more churches to benefit from it. To access this resource for free, use the link below and enter the promo code ELDERS at check-out.

Click here to access Better Church Elders…


Six training sessions designed to help elders understand their role and lead the people of God well:

  1. The Bible and Eldership: What does the Bible have to say about our function as elders? What is it that we are meant to be and do? Charles Hewlett talks with Dr George Wieland.
    Episode 1 study guide click here.
  1. Eldership and Governance: What is it that makes good governance? What do governors actually do? Charles Hewlett talks with Mel Wilson.
    Episode 2 study guide click here.
  1. Models of Eldership: Big, medium or small – does one eldership model fit all churches? What are some of the options?  Where does the pastor fit in to all this? Charles Hewlett talks with Reti Ah-Voa and Grant Harris.
    Episode 3 study guide click here.
  1. Bringing the Bible into Decision Making: How does the Bible remain the foundational guide for our belief and behaviour as a church? What practical things can we do to keep the Bible central in our leadership? Charles Hewlett talks with Dr John Tucker.
    Episode 4 study guide click here.
  1. Maintaining Healthy Eldership Relationships: What things contribute to healthy relationships? What are some of the pitfalls we must try and avoid? Charles Hewlett talks with Jonny Weir.
    Episode 5 study guide click here.
  1. Strengthening our Eldership Team: Where do we find new elders? What training will make us even better? How can we support our pastor and staff more? Charles Hewlett talks with Dr Mike Crudge.
    Episode 6 study guide click here.

Click here to download a printable PDF of the complete Study Guide (11 pages, 85 KB) 

The Framework

Each training session has the following 4 components:

WATCH: a 15-20 minute conversation online with experienced practitioners.

DISCUSS: 3 questions from the study guide.

DO (ACTION): 1 activity for your eldership team to complete.

EXTRA (READING): 1 chapter or article of reading to go a little deeper.