Embedding DNA
By: Tom Bandy
It takes about three “cuts”, often over 3-5 years, to really embed the DNA of a church to become an enduring and guiding part of its culture. Each “cut” goes deeper, and makes congregational identity clearer.

• The first “cut” is often led by a prophetic or visionary pastor who communicates the DNA to a core group of spiritual leaders in the congregation to generate a sense of mission urgency;

• The second “cut” is often a broad, bottom-up process involving the entire congregation through small groups, interview teams, and listening triads, to lay a foundation of trust of innovative action;

• The third “cut” is often a synthesis done by a broad spectrum of leaders from small groups, boards, signature ministries, and other mission units, with special attention to the insights of newcomers. This accelerates the church into cross-cultural outreach.

Between each “cut” leaders intentionally deploy innovative tactics that deliberately tests the boundaries of the DNA and provokes people to deeper reflection. You know when it is a time for the next “cut” when innovation is finally stops in the face of corporate anxiety.