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Congregational Life: Vision, Mission, Identity, Dying: Restructuring

tools for listening to God, generating new vision, developing a mission and empowering communal embrace of congregational identity


2020s Foresight: Three Vital Practices for Thriving in a Decade of Accelerating Change     Hardcover The Amen Effect: Ancient Wisdom to Mend Our Broken Hearts and World Book A Beautiful Constraint: How To Transform Your Limitations Into  Advantages, and Why It's Everyone's Business eBook : Barden, Mark, Morgan,  Adam: Kindle Store     Breakthrough: Trusting God for Big Change in Your Church          CHURCH AFTER: Finding transformation in unexpected change by [Mitchell Hall, Anna]     CHURCH AT THE WALL     Church of the Wild: How Nature Invites Us into the Sacred     Deconstructing Racism: A Path toward Lasting Change     Do Nothing by Celeste Headlee     Funding Forward: A Pathway to More Sustainable Models for Ministry     The Future of American Christianity (Bowers)     Gone for Good Book — Mark Elsdon     Holy Runaways: Rediscovering Faith After Being Burned by Religion          Hybrid Hope: Church of the Future for Churches with a Future: Piazza, Rev.  Michael S., Baskette, Rev. Molly, Schaper, Rev. Donna, James, Coy, Thumma,  Scott, Colwell, Rev. Kelly: 9798843019020: Books     Picture of The Innovative Church     Jesus and the Abolitionists: How Anarchist Christianity Empowers the People          Cover for A New Christianity for a New World     New Wine New Wineskins     Oneing: The Future of Christianity     Organizing Church: Grassroots Practices for Embodying Change in Your Congregation, Your Community, and Our World     Image result for praying with our feet     Purposeful Empathy: Tapping Our Hidden Superpower for Personal, Organizational, and Social Change     Reawakened     Reclaiming Power in Congregational and Community Ministry          Remove the Pews | Spiritual Possibilities for Sacred Spaces (Schaper)     Staying Awake: The Gospel for Changemakers     Teaching at Twilight     This Is God’s Table     Trusting Change     Turning Ourselves Inside Out: Thriving Christian Communities      Undoing Conquest: Ancient Israel, the Bible, and the Future of Christianity     Book - Paperback

Study Guides

The End of Religion     The End of Religion Study Companion     The End of Religion Study Companion     The Storied Church: A Strategy for Congregational Renewal

Copy of White Blue Green and Yellow Photo Collage Modern New Hire Resources Company Presentation (4).png     Cover of Discovering God's Future for Your Church showing a blank wooden signpost

Blogs & Podcasts

People waiting for a job interview7 Suggestions for Outsourcing Your Church’s Staffing Needs

How can outsourcing fill church staffing needs? Greg Rogers shares seven suggestions for outsourcing staff drawing from Oakmont Baptist Church’s response to unexpected yet urgent staffing needs.

mj-imageFresh Expressions:The Modern Approach to Christian Community

Season 4 begins with an introduction of "Fresh Expressions," innovative micro-Christian communities that have arisen as a response to dwindling attendance in traditional churches.

These groups connect with individuals who may be seeking alternative spiritual communities to the Tradition Church structure.

Tune in to episode 1 to delve into the Mixed Ecology of these Christian communities and learn why it's significant.

FOCUS seen through a magnifying glass7 Key Questions to Focus Your Change Agenda

Successful change requires setting priorities. But how can a leader discern which goals are most important? Doug Powe and Lovett Weems suggest a series of questions that can help reveal which initiatives can make the most difference.

Read more

Churches To Follow

The Good Neighbor Movement isn’t your typical church community but they are joining God in their neighborhoods in some incredible ways! Here’s how they introduce themselves on their website: “Based in Greensboro, North Carolina, we are an alternative spiritual community. Inspired by the revolutionary teachings and activism of Jesus, and drawing from diverse religious and wisdom traditions, we seek to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly in everyday life, with our contemplative activist groups, in homes, coffee shops, bars, the outdoors, the streets, online - in our neighborhoods.”

Learn more

Sunbeam over a neighborhood church

Reimagining Church Buildings


How can your church building be an asset rather than a liability? Dave Harder says we must interrogate the dominant narrative that says church is what happens in the building for a few hours on a Sunday and let a new narrative emerge — one that focuses on God’s hopes and dreams for the neighborhood.


View through binoculars of a golden sunrise over a big city skyline

Episode 86: “Daring to Think Forward in a Time of Accelerating Change” featuring Dwight Friesen

How can churches get ahead of the curve by learning to anticipate change rather than always responding to change after the fact? Dwight Friesen shares ways to cultivate the imagination and skill set needed to think forward.

Graphic representing an old church transforming into a vibrant congregation

Flipping the Script on Church Owned Property

How can local churches reimagine property stewardship so that a building can fund a church, rather than a church needing to fund a building? Tom Sine and Dwight Friesen offer examples of churches that have discovered innovative ways to leverage their property to fund their church and ministry.


Not Dead Yet

by Dorothy Butler Bass

[Read this one for a little hope and affirmation!]


Church Anew's Mark Elsdon is confident that We Aren't Broke.

The Kaleo Center offers this excellent resource on Sevenfold Social Transformation: excellent reading for vision, mission, and identity discernment; outreach and organizing discussions; and community engagement decisions.

Joerg Rieger and Tripp Fuller, founder of the Home-brewed Christianity podcast, host an online course: Capital Change: The End of Religion and Business as Usual.

Wadded up ball of paper next to a paper airplane

Episode 71: “Recalibrating the Church” featuring Scott Cormode

Why is change so difficult for churches? In this episode we speak with Scott Cormode about how church leaders can break free of common myths that cloud our thinking about change and how to embrace processes that sow the seeds of meaningful innovation.

Webinars & Training

A Conversation with Gretta Vosper: “Falling in Love with Being Together: 
The Church’s Role Beyond Being Church”

Gretta Vosper is passionate about the work of capturing the “off-label benefits” of religion for individuals and communities for which religious belief or practice is no longer meaningful. She has served West Hill United Church for over twenty-five years, supporting its transition to a theologically non-exclusive community, the first of its kind within traditional Christianity.

A best-selling author, Gretta has written three books: With or Without God: Why the Way We Live is More Important than What We Believe, Amen: What Prayer Can Mean in a World Beyond Belief, and Time or Too Late: Chasing the Dream of a Progressive Christian Faith. Gretta’s blog, A Whole Lot of Broken, is on Substack.


From Organized Religion to Organizing Religion

Brian McLaren and Convergence provide an online, on-demand continuing education program for clergy and laity who want to strengthen their church while preparing for the cultural changes that impact ministry. Built to train lay and ordained leaders as spiritual activists in a growing, multi-denominational movement of just and generous Christianity, the courses include:

  • Clarifying Your Church's Identity
  • Your Message Matters
  • Curating Change
  • Worship Matters
  • Your Congregation As a School of Love
  • Church Impact

Courses can be purchased individually for $69. Small group and congregation pricing also available. Interested in purchasing all 6? Contact Convergence for pricing.


CONVERGENCE offers numerous training webinars and courses for emerging church leadership, for individuals and teams. Their, How to Use Your Church Campus As a Tool for Neighborhood Revitalization or Online Small Group Curriculum for Your Church are options to invite your entire congregation to "imagine a new future for your church".

Offers free monthly webinars around the theme, Adapting to a New Reality: Living into a Fresh Vision for God's Church.


Innovation Lab's Cohorts walk through their five-phase Theological Innovation Process, then partner with a trained coach from outside the faith community (and innovators from around the country) in an 18-month journey toward organizational transformation.

LeaderWise's CrossForm:

a unique approach

to equipping congregations

for 21st century ministry.

The focus is threefold:

  • strengthening core
  • building flexibility
  • and deepening impact

In Our Library

The Age of the Spirit | Baker Publishing Group     Front Cover Preview Image - 1 of 9 - The Agile Church: Spirit-Led Innovation in an Uncertain Age     34564368. sy475           Book - Paperback               Church in the Inventive Age  -     By: Doug Pagitt     Cover Image     Church Refugees: Sociologists Reveal Why People Are Done with Church but Not Their Faith  -     By: Josh Packard Ph.D., Ashleigh Hope               Book - Paperback     Community: The Structure Of Belonging, 2nd Edition     Deepening Your Effectiveness     Emergence Christianity: What It Is, Where It Is Going, and Why It Matters:  Phyllis Tickle: 9780801013553 -     Essays on the New Worshiping Communities Movement     Cover Image     Faith of Leap, The: Embracing a Theology of Risk, Adventure & Courage -  eBook: Michael Frost, Alan Hirsch: 9781441234247 -          A Field Guide for the Missional Congregation: Embarking on a Journey of Transformation     Book - Paperback     FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS     Future Faith: Ten Challenges Reshaping Christianity in the 21st Century     Gear Up!: Nine Essential Processes for the Optimized Church  -     By: Kay Kotan          The Great Spiritual Migration by Brian D. Mclaren     Liberating Hope | Daring to Renew the Mainline Church (Piazza & Trimble)     The Missional Leader: Equipping Your Church to Reach a Changing World (Jossey-Bass Leadership Network #17) Cover Image     A New Day in the City: Urban Church Revival  -     By: Donna Claycomb Sokol, Roger Owens     New Growth in God's Garden          E-Book          Real Good Church | How Our Church Came Back from the Dead, and Yours Can, Too (Baskette)     Book - Paperback          The Sacred Secular: How God Is Using the World to Shape the Church  -     By: Dottie Escobedo-Frank, Rob Rynders               Structured for Mission          Tired of Apologizing for a Church I Don't Belong To          Cover Image     True Inclusion     Cover Image     Vital: Churches Changing Communities and the World: Acevedo, Mr Jorge:  9781426767555: Books - Amazon     Weird Church | Welcome to the Twenty-First Century (Estock and Nixon)     

Studies - In Our Library

     Slow Church     Slow Church Study Guide