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Church Growth

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Church Growth, Revitalization, Planting

Ley, Lauren, Natural Church Development.  Dr. Ley offers an introduction to Natural Church Development, an article published in the CORE Connection. Click here to read the article.

Warren, Richard . The Purpose-Driven Church. Zondervan (1995). Fifteen years ago, this widely popular book (and attendant tools and studies) made the challenging claim that every church is driven by something, typically tradition, finances, programs, personalities, events, seekers, and even buildings. But according to Warren, in order for a church to be healthy it must become a purpose-driven church, built around the five New Testament purposes given to the church by Jesus. The five-part biblical strategy enables churches to grow- warmer through fellowship- deeper through discipleship- stronger through worship- broader through ministry- larger through evangelism. 399 pages.

Foss, Michael W. Power Surge: Six Marks of Discipleship for a Changing Church. Augsburg Fortress, 2000. This book presents a strong case to clergy and lay for transforming congregations from a membership model to a discipleship model of church affiliation. Beginning with a careful analysis of recent patterns in church membership/demographics that argue for this paradigm shift, subsequent chapters detail the unique leadership and organizational needs of a discipleship model, explore the building and maintaining of fundamental trust-in God and in God’s people-as the cornerstone of the model, and provide practical help for assessing the present and developing strategies for moving into the future. Can be used in personal, group and church-wide studies. 184 pages.

Groff, Kent Ira. The Soul of Tomorrow’s Church: Weaving Spiritual Practices in Ministry Together. Nashville: Upper Room Books, 2000. Groff invites congregational leaders to weave spiritual practices into all aspects of ministry. He makes a case that the sould of the Church will be restored as spiritual practices are woven in five ministry functions: worship, administration, education, soul care, and outreach. Every chapter teems with practical ways to weave spiritual practices of prayer, discernment, faith stories, silence, and hospitality in each one of these five specific ministry functions.181 pages.

Diehm, William J. Caring Criticism: Building Bridges Instead of Walls. St. Louis: Stephen Ministries. (1998). To help churches emerge from contentious times, this little books, which combines Christian love and Biblical principles with psychology, can help build bridges and encourage peple to change without hurting them or making them angry. Written in a practical and accessibly style, and suitable for small group use, Diehm is specific, balanced, and honest. 99 pages.