Healthy churches are not territorial.
Almost every church struggles with some incidents or areas where there is territorialism.
The healthier the church, the less of this there is.
Territorialism can occur with space, resources or ministries.
Every space in the church except for personal offices should be a shared space. Ultimately, the building, resources and ministries of the church belong to God. They do not belong to the congregation, pastor, staff, ministry teams etc.
Even though we often learn to share in preschool or kindergarten, it is a skill we easily seem to lose in churches. Lack of shared spaces is often well intentioned and rooted in passion for a particular ministry or space.
While it may be well intentioned, it is never healthy and is often toxic. It almost always leads to hurt feelings and can prevent focusing on mission and vision.
The church of Jesus Christ will never die, but individual churches may die. Churches can only die from within. It is often a death of 100,000 paper cuts – it is the petty stuff that is often the issue. Territorialism is always petty and can even rise to the level of idolatry.
Healthy churches avoid a focus on the petty and territorial.
Rev. Dr. Marcus J. Carlson, Executive Director