About NCD Canada
The Natural Church Development movement was started by Christian A. Schwarz and his colleague Christoph Schalk in 1989. They found from their initial research in one thousand churches globally, that eight Quality Characteristics (8QCs) differentiate healthy, growing churches from those in decline: Empowering Leadership; Gift-based Ministry; Passionate Spirituality; Effective Structures; Inspiring Worship Service; Holistic Small Groups; Need-oriented Evangelism; and Loving Relationships.
They created the NCD Survey that churches use to determine health and quality by determining which of the 8QCs is the Minimum Factor. By leveraging their Maximum Factor, churches work on their Minimum Factor to remove barriers to the growth potential God has already given them. This is called the all-by-itself growth principle.
NCD is represented in 70 countries by National Partners who distribute the Surveys, distributes print resources, introduces new tools & processes, and deploys Coaches, often through denominational partnerships. The National Partner in Canada is Bill Bickle, the owner of FORDelm Inc., a small growth-planning consultancy to non-profit organizations. Bill has been the Canadian National Partner since January 2009.
The tools and resources available to churches have grown substantially since NCD was introduced in Canada in 1998. Christian Schwarz is developing resources and tools for each of the eight characteristics, to help individuals, groups and congregations gain insight into each of the eight, and to foster growth across the board. Five of the eight books in the series have been written, including The 3 Colors of Community and The 3 Colors of Leadership being released in May 2012. Processes have been developed to help churches work through an annual planning cycle from conducting the Survey through understanding the results, identifying the barriers to health to developing an action plan.
A Survey tool is now available for non-church Christian organizations like Christian camps, Christian schools, and Christian businesses. Click here to learn more about these related resources.
Many denominations have a congregational development person responsible for NCD. If you do not know such a person in your denomination, feel free to contact NCD Canada through this site to gain assistance.