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Publication Date

Fall 11-16-2017


Young Life in Latin America and the Caribbean consists of ministry to teenagers in twenty five countries over a continent and a half. There are twelve senior leaders that give supervision to the leadership in these countries. The scope of this doctoral project is to design a leadership development plan that addrsses the needs, issues, challenges for each of these twelve leaders in their areas of responsibility.

I live in Colorado Springs, Colorado but the reality of my leadership challenge is that where I live is irrelevant to my calling. I must lead from significant distance from the people who are following me. Carolina Pi lives in Correntes, Argentina. She gives leadership to the four countries of Argentina, Paraguay, Uraguay and Chile. The closest senior leader to Carolina is Enrique Vargas who lives in Lima, Peru some 2,049 miles away. With the leadership under my responsibility I must learn and adapt to a leadership style, structure and vision that empowers and encourages strong and healthy ministry separated by thousands of miles.

Distance is only one of the challenges to be addressed in this project. The vast variety of cultures that our staff give leadership to requires a leadership development plan that is instructive for every community and culture as well as scalable in a multiple of countries around the division. This will require the skill of transference on behalf of our staff – the ability to extend what has been learnt in one context and creatively apply other contexts. In order to accomplish this I will distil the vast training material of Young Life’s seventy five year mission down to its most basic level, meaning we will focus on the core DNA of the mission of Young Life that transends cultures.

There is very little written specifically on distance leadership in Christian literature. The business world and the military world have however done considerable thinking on this topic. The theological basis of this leadership development plan will center around an apostolic leadership model based on the morphing of the apostle Paul’s leadership growth expressed in the Book of Acts and articulately described by Neil Cole in his work Journeys to Significance. Also central to the project will be the original research of a multitude of global leaders who are actively engaged in effective distance leadership.

The ministry call on our Young Life staff is clear: grow the ministry under your leadership with clarity, health, depth and joy as you allow Jesus to bring life and courage to our staff, volunteer leaders, kids and families. Clearly this is an impossible worldly endeavor. The reliance on the intervention and empowerment of the Holy Spirit is central to the development of this project and the implementation of our mission throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)

First Advisor

Logan, Robert

Document Type





leadership, leadership development




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November 2018

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