My name is Korey Vincent Grice and I was awarded my Doctor of Ministry (DMin) degree in 2023. I am from the United States, from the Washington, DC area.
My dissertation was birthed out of helping congregations in urban cities find strategies in the merging process in order to have a long-term impact for the congregations. My dissertation was focused on the seven strategies I was able to identify that can help congregations that are in the same position—the process of merging. My strategies assist such congregations so that the merger is healthy and the impact is long lasting.
I want to make sure that as pastors and congregations merge, they have succession plans in place, that they have transition plans for everybody involved, and that their expectations are clear, so that no more damage is done to either the congregation or the leadership. In some cases, I have seen where the impact was positive for the congregation but negative for the leadership. My passion is to ensure that no leaders or congregations are left without support and guidance during that transition period.
The BGU DMin doctoral program helped me to look at my own pain and the merger process with a larger lens that I did not have before. When we went into the merger with some congregations, we had some resources, but not many resources focused on the strategy and process for merging. I would not have been able to assist others with mergers if I had not done this doctoral project. In my research, I searched different cities and different congregational contexts. I was able to get a wider view of why some congregations failed and some congregations did well. I brought those different strategies together for any congregations that are merging when merging is a viable option, especially after the pandemic.
BGU is about transformation. My studies were not just about the research but about how the research helps to go back and be transformational in the city in which someone is serving. Most of the doctoral programs that I looked at were academically based. But I am not an academician: I am a practitioner. And I needed some practical strategies to ensure that what I was doing was and will last in the years beyond me.