Appendix: Three Styles of Senior Spiritual Leadership

Direct Leadership

This entails being the lead and visible person at an installation and actively coordinating the activities of the OCF. If the ministry is multi-faceted, this type of leadership will be shared with other members, some of whom are junior officers, and it will involve discipleship of other leaders. This is applied where direct senior leadership is appropriate and required–when there is a need for a senior leader–when there is no other OCF leadership available that is capable either by experience or rank to cause a fully effective ministry.

Peer Ministry

‘This is a ministry to other senior officers who share the same professional leadership responsibilities and burdens that you do. It is clear from those who have made themselves available to this sort of ministry that the heavy responsibilities of senior leadership provide many opportunities for sharing practical application of God’s Word, for encouragement, evangelism, and discipleship. This is always a requirement and should be applied whenever the opportunity is available. Direct Leadership should not be totally forsaken for this type of ministry, however. If there is a lack or shortage of other experienced OCF leadership available, this style should be used in conjunction with leadership of the overall ministry while developing junior leaders to take on the coordination role. A senior military leader should be able to handle a peer ministry and develop unior leaders for coordinating an installation-wide ministry.

Ministry of Visibility

If you are not the direct leader, find ways to be visible and share your ministry with junior officers. Meet regularly for prayer and discussion with those who are the direct leaders. Use your presence for encouragement and example, and provide advice and mentoring. Support your chaplains. There are some positions and assignments where it is not possible or appropriate for Direct Leadership– perhaps extensive TDY or a very senior position that requires a full day and evening schedule. However, there should never be complete withdrawal from ministry. This type of ministry can be of great encouragement to younger officers who are asking critical questions about integrating their faith and their profession.