The Healthy Church Initiative

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Every church leader desires to be effective.

To be effective, a leader must be empowered to lead with vision, purpose and accountability.

For a church to be effective, it must have strong organizational structures.

The Bible offers clear principles for how a church should be organized.

A church must be deliberate about developing strong organizational structures.

A well-organized church is in the best position to respond to both internal and external threats.

Through our Healthy Church Initiative, we help churches develop strong organizational structures.

We approach the Healthy Church Initiative from an unapologetically conservative, Evangelical Christian worldview.

The Healthy Church Initiative focuses on three key areas:

Church Governance

Ministry Leadership

Congregational Leadership

It has never been more important for churches to protect themselves from internal and external threats.

5 KEY ELEMENTS TO DEVELOPING STRONG ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURES

1.  Choose the right form of legal entity

2.  Express your spiritual mission throughout your legal documents

3.  Adopt a strong Constitution & Bylaws

4.  Add policies that express your convictions in a practical way

5.  Create a culture of peacemaking and accountability

THE PROCESS

i.     Choose the right form of legal entity

ii.    Express your spiritual mission throughout your legal documents

iii.   Adopt a strong Constitution & Bylaws

iv.   Add policies that express your convictions in a practical way

v.    Create a culture of peacemaking and accountability

vi.   Schedule a drafting session with one of the team members at Crain|Schuette Attorney

vii.  Revise documents until final

viii. Present documents to your congregation

ix.   Hold a special meeting to vote on adoption of documents

x.    File and publish documents

THE TEAM

Larry L. Crain

Senior Partner Tennessee Office

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Larry L. Crain is a nationally recognized constitutional lawyer and frequent lecturer, and commentator.  He has litigated, debated and practiced widely in the area of constitutional law and human rights. Crain’s concern for First Amendment issues, particularly the rights of individuals to be free of religious discrimination, led him early in his legal career to serve as General Counsel for the Rutherford Institute and later as Senior Counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice where he litigated a broad spectrum of constitutional issues on a national level before the United States Supreme Court, the Third, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeal, the Supreme Court of Massachusetts, the Supreme Court of North Carolina and the Supreme Court of Tennessee. His litigation experience on issues of constitutional law spans 26 states

Brian L. Schuette

Managing Partner Kentucky Office

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Brian Schuette is a seasoned civil litigator with over 25 years of law practice experience. He is AV-Rated by Martindale Hubbell. As the managing partner of the Kentucky office of CSA, Brian oversees the firm’s personal injury and general civil litigation practice. He has handled many wrongful death and serious personal injury cases, including motor vehicle collisions, slip and fall, product liability and dog bite cases. The majority of Brian’s cases come from client or attorney referrals. Brian is trained as a mediator (Rule 31 Listed in Tennessee) and Christian conciliator (alternative dispute resolution for churches and church members). This training has been a useful tool for Brian as he works with individual and business clients to achieve excellent results as efficiently as possible.

Joshua D. Hershberger

Partner Indiana Office

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Josh graduated Summa Cum Laude and was awarded the President’s Citation of Merit (PCC’s highest award) and the Eagles’ Award (PCC’s highest athletic award). He was also named to Who’s Who Among America’s Colleges. He received a full academic scholarship to Thomas M. Cooley School of Law in Lansing, MI. While in law school, Josh was elected president of the Cooley chapter of the Christian Legal Society, competed on the school’s ABA National Moot Court Team, joined the Thomas M. Cooley law review, and served as a teaching pastor at a local church. In the fall of 2010, Josh had the privilege of interning at Bopp, Coleson & Bostrom, one of the nation’s premier Constitutional law firms. During his internship, he helped with litigation in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court, defending a national non-profit against government officials, and providing compliance advice to non-profits and political organizations across the United States. After graduating from Cooley Magna Cum Laude, Josh started his own firm, Hershberger Law Office, in Madison, Indiana, and joined a local church as a teaching and worship pastor.

Amanda L. Blakeman, Partner Kentucky Office

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Upon graduating from law school in 2002, Amanda joined the firm of Bell, Orr, Ayers & Moore, P.S.C. (BOAM) in Bowling Green, Kentucky as a full time attorney. At BOAM, Amanda practiced in the areas of insurance defense litigation, bankruptcy, education and school law and banking law. In 2015, Amanda joined CRAIN|SCHUETTE ATTORNEYS. Amanda is licensed to practice in all state courts in the Commonwealth of Kentucky as well as the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Kentucky and the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky. Ms. Blakeman is also licensed to practice in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. She is a member of the Bowling Green-Warren County Bar Association and the Kentucky Bar Association.