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Ministering Cross-Culturally: An Incarnational Model for Personal Relationships Paperback – October 1, 2003


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Baker Academic; 2 edition (October 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801026474
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801026478
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,162 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Sherwood G. Lingenfelter (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh) is provost and senior vice-president at Fuller Theological Seminary. Marvin K. Mayers (Ph.D., University of Chicago) has taught for many years in the intercultural studies department of Biola University.

About the Author

Sherwood G. Lingenfelter (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh) is senior professor of anthropology and provost emeritus at Fuller Theological Seminary. Marvin K. Mayers (Ph.D., University of Chicago) has taught for many years in the intercultural studies department of Biola University.

More About the Author

Sherwood Lingenfelter (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh) is provost, senior vice-president, and professor of intercultural studies at Biola University.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Great book... fast read... very practical.
A reader
Lingenfelter puts composes some well thought ideas in regards to cross culture understanding.
Allen Holder
I highly recommend this book to all working in cross-cultural ministry.
Paul Rodney Pennington

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By FrKurt Messick HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 31, 2004
Format: Paperback
This text is one of the better guides for cross-cultural ministry that I have found. In its relatively few pages (only 120 pages), it contains a wealth of information based on some easily-remembered and applied principles.
Increasingly in the world today, no matter what profession one chooses, there will be people from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures -- even in the smallest of towns, people from different social strata will interact and come together in certain venues, and church and chaplaincy settings are among those. Cross-cultural ministry is not something reserved to those going off in foreign mission fields, but has an impact right here at home, wherever home may be.
One of the key concepts here is the dealing with conversation and conflict. The way people interact differently can lead to conflict -- not necessarily open violence (although sometimes that can happen), but rather the kind of tension that is caused when people don't understand each other. What we sometimes fail to forget is that people attribute importance and moral force to their actions and those of others, and will react not only to what is being said and done, but to their own interpretations of the meanings of those words and actions. This is derived from cultural influences -- shared culture as well as personal and family culture.
Lingenfelter and Mayer look at key concepts -- differences in the way we look at time, judgement, crisis management, goals, self-valuation, and vulnerabilities. For example, in urban cultures, people tend to lead fast-paced lives more frequently than those in small-town cultures; a person moving from one setting to another may find it irritating to be in such a setting, and perhaps not even know why.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By P. Fung on April 2, 2002
Format: Paperback
I first read this before my a short-term (6 weeks) summer trip to an east asian country, and although I am of asian descent, it definitely prepared me for things that I would have otherwise been caught by surprise.
For those preparing to go cross-cultural, even for short-term trips, this is a must-read. it isn't long, but its full of great stuff to pray, meditate, think about, and discuss. It does a great job of equipping and working on your mindset to be ready to face many of the things that will be guaranteed to culture shock you.
even for those who have already done/been doing cross-cultural work, I think this book is always a fresh reminder of the Biblical example we have in Christ, and that, as with all things, should be our singular focus. Who is Jesus the Christ, and how does that change the way I live my life for His glory?
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19 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Matthew Gunia VINE VOICE on April 2, 2008
Format: Paperback
"Ministering Cross-Culturally" is a practical book useful for all Christians, bur intended specifically for those who minister among people of another culture. Cultural differences often lead to misunderstandings and conflict as a person of one culture does not behave as a person from another culture expects. To avoid prolonged conflict, Sherwood Lingenfelter, provost and senior vice president of Fuller Theological Seminary, presents the anthropological work of Marvin Mayers and applies it to cross cultural ministry.

Marvin Mayers work analyzes cultural values and divides them into twelve dimensions. Each of these dimensions has a contrasting value, making six competing value pairs that can be plotted on a grid. Lingenfelter provides a simple test so that the reader might plot himself on a each of the six grids, and determine his personal/cultural values. These pairs of values are as follows:

Time (time conscious and punctual versus event-oriented)
Judgment (seeing the world in "black & white" versus "shades of grey)
Handling Crises (focus on preparation versus comfort thinking on your feet)
Goals (task orientation versus relationship orientation)
Individual Worth (is honor achieved by works or bestowed at birth)
Vulnerability (is it OK to show weakness?)

Lingenfelter then analyzes the six pairs of values to illustrate the similarities and differences between Western values, Yapese (from the Island of Yap, where Lingenfelter did most of his doctoral/mission work), and the values displayed by Jesus. This knowledge of our own Western values and the often-contrasting values of others is necessary to achieve the purpose Lingenftelter advances for the reader.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Pastor Roger on October 5, 2002
Format: Paperback
I found this book while I was browsing Amazon back in the Spring of 2002. I sent away for a used copy of it, and I'm glad I did.
The author of this book spent a good deal of time on the Island of Yap, which is in the South Pacafic, in Micronesia. He documents his cross-cultural experiences in this book. He tells of both the good and bad of his experiences and how it strengthened him as both a Christian and minister of the gospel. He also tells of the barriers he had to cross in order to effectivey share the gospel to the people of Yap. Overall, this book is a cross between a "how-to" and a cross cultural autobiography.
Like Rev. Lingenfelter, I am also involved in cross-cultural ministry. And even though I've never been to Yap, I can understand what he went through. If you do any type of cross-cultural ministry here in America or anywhere else, youshould read this book. It may not have all of the answers you need. But it will indeed get you pointed in the right direction.
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