Date of Award

Spring 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)


Barnett College of Ministry & Theology


Department of Christian Ministries and Religion

Primary Advisor

Dr. William Hackett

Second Advisor

Dr. Wayde Goodall

Third Advisor

Dr. Jim Vigil


One of the great needs of the church at this moment is to keep the primary funders, “Gifters,” and the primary workers, “Lifters,” of the church together in order to grow healthy, thriving, life-giving, Spirit-inspired churches. Inspired by the experiences of declining and plateauing church the author has witnessed and experienced, this dissertation will examine how to keep the church family together generationally, while at the same time planting new churches with the generations still intact. The research within this project, comprised of a theological study of biblical principles, a study of current literature, and surveys and interviews from pastors, Lifters, and Gifters from ten thriving churches, will help define that process by answering the question: How can the Church encourage Lifters and Gifters to work together for the success of the local church? The use of the terms Gifters and Lifters refers to the two entities that make up a great church. Gifters in this project are defined as those individuals forty and older who are the primary funders of the work of the Lord in a local church context. Lifters are thirty-nine and younger and are the primary servant leaders or volunteers in a local church. The Spirit of God moves the church forward through those who give and those who work to grow the church with no desire for monetary reward. This project will center on helping the local church keep these two groups together in loving unity, growing and expanding and planting the Church.