This hands-on guide helps congregations meet the reality and challenges of today's constantly changing urban and suburban church communities. Congregations in Transition, written in an easy-to-follow workbook format, is designed to help communities of faith focus on the changing needs of their members and explore the opportunities and options open to them.
Table of Contents
Figures, Tables, and Working Notes.
Foreword by Loren B. Mead.
1. Introduction: Invitation to a Journey.
Who Needs to Change?
What Does Change Look Like?
How Does Change Happen?
The Journey Ahead.
Companions for the Journey.
Doing the Work.
2. Getting the Lay of the Land.
The Place Map: Define Your Boundaries.
The People Map: Naming and Knowing Your
Conversations with Community People.
The Institutional Map: Recognizing Historical
Summary Exercise: Windshield Survey.
3. Sizing Up Your Tabernacle.
Basic Timeline: An Orientation Exercise.
Timeline of Buildings and Facilities.
Timeline of Leadership and Decision Making.
Timeline of Resources: People, Money, and
Timeline of Worship and Music.
Summary Celebration: Creating a Comprehensive
Summarizing Your Work.
4. Looking for Pillars of Fire.
Encountering the Wilderness.
Wilderness Exercise 1: Testing Your Choices.
Wilderness Exercise 2: Discerning Directions.
Wilderness Exercise 3: Naming the Pillar of
Imagining Life Across the Jordan.
Imagination Exercise 1: When Strangers Become
Imagination Exercise 2: When Neighbors Become
Imagination Exercise 3: Testing the Waters.
Coda for the Congregation: A Time for
Across the Jordan: Settling in the Promised
Launching a New Ministry: Crossing the Jordan.
New Habits of Ministry.
Sharing Kitchen Tables.
Sharing Tables, Chairs, and Schedules.
Sharing Boardroom Tables.
Sharing Sacred Tables.