Healthy Disclosure: Solving Communication Quandaries in Congregations

by Kibbie Simmons Ruth, Karen A. McClintock. The Alban Institute, 2007.

Mistakes in communication and information management can lead to dysfunction and crises in a congregation. This source offers a thorough and helpful examination of such issues and practical strategies for healthy communication. It equips church leaders, clergy, laity, consultants, and denominational leaders with tools and guidelines to make informative, conscious decisions in potentially explosive situations. It also offers practical ways that effective communication practices can be a part of everyday life in the faith community. Common mistakes in handling secrets, betrayal of trust, and management of confidential information are discussed. Help is offered regarding managing and correcting poor communication attempts. Strategies for dealing with sensitive disclosures are explored, covering such areas as giving records, public sex offender information, and confidential information about previous clergy. This source is extremely valuable in equipping congregations to practice transparency, while maintaining high ethical standards.