The books title offers congregational leaders and others the opportunity to explore and implement consensus as a decision-making model. Authors Marcia J. Patton and Nora J. Percival clearly state what consensus is and what it is not. They provide a how-to resource for persons who want to change how their groups make decisions. Although voting, the holy way, the majority rule, and Roberts Rules of Order are deeply entrenched in this country, a consensus is another way to think through, discuss, feel, and arrive at a decision. Patton and Percival provide real-life examples, planning and meeting ideas, and essential steps to develop a consensus decision-making model.
“Chock full of practical ideas backed by proven theory, this book is for anyone considering, exploring, or seeking to improve their consensus decision-making processes. I highly recommend it.” —Dr. C. Jeff Woods, interim general secretary, ABCUSA Office of the General Secretary
“A church is healthy and happy when she depends on neither the constitution nor Robert’s Rules of Order to harmonize differences. In Sacred Decisions, Marcia Patton and Nora Percival share how they used proven spiritual practices to help churches reach consensus in the congregation, having the mind of Christ.” —J. Alfred Smith Sr., pastor emeritus, Allen Temple Baptist Church, Oakland, California
Marcia J. Patton, PhD, MDiv, MAR, is the first executive minister of the newest American Baptist Churches USA region, the Evergreen Association. Evergreen Association is unique among American Baptists because it is organized around ethnic caucuses and does its work by consensus.
Prior to this appointment in 2004, she spent thirteen years as Associate Executive Minister with the American Baptist Churches of Northwest, and served as associate minister for churches in Pennsylvania, Utah, and New Jersey. Dr. Patton serves on the transition team with American Baptist Churches USA, and as a delegate to the National Council of Churches Assembly.
Nora J. Percival is a Hicksite Friend (Quaker) with a strong interest in Quaker process and history. She has held leadership positions in four different Quaker meetings in different parts of the country, as well as serving with regional, national, and international Quaker organizations. In addition, she is an experienced teacher/trainer, specializing in developing and delivering health education and professional-development programs for adults.