Take The Gloves Off



Take The Gloves Off

Doing ministry in the chaotic times in which we live is the calling that you accepted. That doesn’t mean that the formal training you received prepared you for the dysfunction you face. Ministry can also be isolating. There are times when you need a ministry partner that can share your burden who is not within your own flock of care. Take The Gloves Off was born out of a desire to connect pastors in authentic communities so they could wrestle together over everything–from methodologies to God’s design for your own life and His design for His church.


Our dream: thirty pastors in one room and unafraid to get into the mire together with a goal of creating healthy spaces for their people to know God better and find the strength to move forward even in the toughest challenges of life. Our aim is an open minded and passionate conversation about issues we’re all facing. Posturing and pride must be checked at the door!


The facilitator, Ken Riley, will seek to stimulate the discussions to move the group beyond “ground zero” to hit the necessary nerve to find solutions. Every man’s “take-home” will likely be different. Most of all, what we have seen in the past TGO’s is that this forum foster’s a sense of community. As a result gives pastors new friends that will stay in contact throughout the years and be there when you need it most.


Here is what previous TGO attendees have said about their experience:


“I was so thankful to have been invited to join a great bunch of men at TGO. I found the event to be more helpful in many ways than any other leadership events I have been to. It challenged me to think through areas of personal growth, especially in the area of team ministry. It also showed me how imperative it is to be intentional about developing leaders. The books had some great content and I loved the interaction. I loved the honesty and the ability to disagree and have conversation.”

-Jon Pickens, First Baptist Church, Lowell, Michigan


“Our attendance at last year’s TGO forum was truly life and ministry changing. We were working on our leadership skills and saw this forum as an opportunity to rub elbows with some other pastors to get some ministry/leadership tips. We received that and a whole lot more… today we are leaner and healthier then we’ve been in years as a result of our time at TGO.”

-Phil Byars, First Baptist Church, Elkhart, Indiana



“For me, TGO was an opportunity to sharpen awareness of two things; God’s design for the church and God’s design for me. Understanding God’s design for the church and how His grace has equipped us individually to partner with Him, specifically to our own wiring, is liberating.  The fellowship, food and coffee was good to!”

-Mark Shaw, Calvary Baptist Church, Greenville, Michigan



Need to hear more about Take The Gloves Off?


“I’d encourage any pastor wanting to be encouraged, stretched and reminded that they are not alone in this beautiful and tough calling—go to Take the Gloves Off forum if you ever get a chance! Ken has put together an event for pastors that deals with doing ministry without a group of peers to support you or the tools to help you work through challenges with confidence. I found myself with a new group of friends who were both peers, and some excellent resources I could bring to bear on ministry challenges I was facing.”

-Craig Miller, Grace Baptist Church, Cedarville, Ohio



“As for the training at TGO, it was very helpful to me, and personally encouraging. God has allowed Ken Riley to have awareness of a number of critical lessons on leadership. He has been a good steward of those lessons by way of implementing them in his ministry and now sharing them with other leaders. The reading was excellent, the presentations were warm and connecting, and the discussion was amazing. The time in the process groups was tremendous, allowing us to think aloud about the concepts presented and our ministries.”

-Tim Baker, Bethany Baptist Church, Salem, Oregon