Saccone, Protege

At the Grove we are spending all sorts of time developing leaders and influencing the future of our church and of the church, so it’s totally natural for us to be interested in what Steve Saccone has developed through the Protege program. This book, Protege: Developing Your Next Generation of Leaders is an inside look into the program that Saccone developed at Mosaic church in L.A. and is now being similarly run at a couple other larger churches (mainly affiliated through the Origins project)

Steve Saccone, Protege

Steve Saccone is currently a pastor in San Francisco, and he married a writer (Cheri Saccone), so his books are particularly better written than most by pastors. This makes Protege a great read, with a lot of ease to notice and pull out relatable principles to your local context.

The Protege program is built on (and the book is sectioned by) five  ministry leadership principles:

  1. character and spiritual depth
  2. relational leadership
  3. missional formation
  4. transformative communication
  5. entrepreneurial leadership

These were immediately attractive to me, as we carry these same leadership values at The Grove, so if we can get some help in developing leaders that carry the same values – we’re all over that. If you want some help structuring leadership development in your christian church or organization, Saccone does a great job, and you’ll get a lot of help through this book.

I read this book incredibly quickly for project research but still, here’s some stellar highlight material:

  • p.23, “My experiences and observations…have revealed that four critical things that church leaders continually struggle with are burnout, moral failure, irrelevance to the surrounding culture and division within.”
  • p.29, quoting Ruth Haley Barton, “We set young leaders up for a fall if we encourage them to envision what they can do before they consider the kind of person they should be.”
  • p. 29, “A character-driven leader is a leader who becomes a person with something to say.”
  • p. 35, “At the core, envy is really an aching dissatisfaction with who we are, or who we are not. It breeds a way of life that involves constantly comparing ourselves with others and quantifying our successes and failures against our own self-worth. It is actually no way of life at all. This sin leads to a slow death.”
  • p.46, “We’ll never see God-honoring fruit produced in our lives if we are not abiding in Jesus. We may see external success and growth, but never the true fruit of the Spirit.”
  • p.47, “Do you know that farmers don’t actually make anything? They aren’t the ones who produce the avocado or banana. That’s not their job. Instead, farmers cultivate environments where life has the possibility to grow. They partner with the powers of nature (water, sun, soil, etc.) to prepare a place for seeds to germinate and grow. Of course they do their part in planning and working hard, but ultimately the results of growth (bearing fruit) are not in their control.”
  • p.52, “He was plagued by the terrifying question, Who am I if I’m not the person I thought I was and if I don’t have the competence I thought I did?”
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