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Cross-Cultural Conflict: Building Relationships for Effective Ministry

3.82  ·  Rating Details  ·  111 Ratings  ·  14 Reviews
Whether at home or abroad, communicating with people of other cultures is difficult. It requires new ways of thinking and interpreting the world. When conflict arises, as it often does, the issues become even more confusing. Without a good understanding of how different cultures handle conflict, our best intentions may only make matters worse. With a particular focus on As ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published January 21st 1994 by IVP Academic (first published January 1st 1993)
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Miss Leacock
May 03, 2015 Miss Leacock marked it as to-read

Which is the greater sin: to tell a lie or to lose your temper?...If you are a North American or from Western Europe, and especially if you have white skin, you chose lying as the greater sin. If you are from another part of the world, my guess is that you chose losing your temper as the greater sin. If you are from the Western world (North America or Europe) but a person of color, you may have had difficulty choosing, since your heritage may allow you to offer reasoned argument for either
K.J. Grace
Jan 15, 2016 K.J. Grace rated it it was amazing
If you're thinking about going overseas or into a community that has a different culture than you, I would highly recommend this book. It is important to know how to communicate with cultures that are unlike your own and to understand the inner workings of those cultures. I am reading this book for my Cultural Anthropology course and I find it fascinating how different cultures have different ways of communicating, namely direct (Western world) and indirect (two-thirds world i.e. most of the res ...more
Nov 25, 2014 Travis rated it really liked it
This was eye-opening, not only for my own cross-cultural engagement, but also for all my relationships. Especially helpful was the section reviewing the different ways people respond to conflict or problems. My go to response is evaluative (judgmental), however this can be devastating in cross-cultural work. I was able to connect so much of the material to real situations I face in my work. I will be referencing this book in the future. Definitely a go-to resource for this topic.
Jason Dietmeyer
Feb 22, 2016 Jason Dietmeyer rated it liked it
A good book with some keen insights into mission, and specifically the potential harm of short term mission teams. It offers great advice on how to keep those teams healthy and productive, and how to deal with conflict in a cross-cultural setting. I don't agree with everything in this book, but it is worth reading,
Jun 20, 2013 Amy rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, religion
This was a very interesting book. The author wrote it to help missionaries as they go on their mission trips around the world. He uses the Bible and the word of Jesus to explain how we need to confront cross-cultural conflict and find the happy medium. There is obviously the underlying idea that those who are causing the conflict need Jesus and need to be converted to Christianity but that was just a subtle undertone that comes with any book about mission work. I found that a lot of his points w ...more
Sep 09, 2013 Stephanie rated it really liked it
A very helpful, insightful book. I thought a lot of this information was invaluable! However, I did think that some of the Biblical examples were a bit of a stretch. I would have to look into that further to see what I thought about it. Perhaps that is just me being stuck in my own viewpoint and not wanting it challenged. Practically essential info for anyone who will be living abroad or spending a significant amount of time there.
Scott Hayden
Aug 20, 2012 Scott Hayden rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Scott by: Rachel Chambers
This is my #2 most recommended book to those who live/work cross culturally.

Elmer surveys the landscape of conflict resolution, demonstrating significant overlap between several non-Western and Biblical models. Surprise, surprise - the American in-your-face way is not the only way. Nor is the typical Western interpretation of Matthew 18 as a lockstep sequence Biblically defensible as the only process.
Jul 26, 2010 adllto rated it it was ok
Shelves: theology
Interesting book really aimed at American audience however interesting categories and the descriptions especially of indirect conflict avoidance resolution was particularly enlightening.
Aug 03, 2011 Bro rated it it was amazing
Must read if you are working cross culturally. Duane Elmer seems to have lots of good insights on these topics. Take the time to improve your thinking!
Seth Westhoff
Feb 16, 2010 Seth Westhoff rated it it was amazing
Great examples and very clear ! A must read for any cross-cultural worker.
Sep 25, 2010 Sarah added it
Another great resource if one is headed overseas to work or minister.
Mar 04, 2009 kt rated it it was amazing
so useful! in how i thought about ministry
Jun 17, 2013 Julianne rated it it was amazing
Brilliantly helpful!
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Duane H. Elmer (Ph.D., Michigan State U.) is director of the Ph.D. program in educational studies and is the G. W. Aldeen Chair of International Studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. In addition to traveling and teaching in over 75 countries, he has provided cross-cultural training to Fortune 500 companies, relief and development agencies, mission organizations, ch ...more
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