What is the Emerging Church - Part IV

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Emerging Churches: by Eddie Gibbs, Ryan Bolger UK - £8.57, USA - $12.99

Two book recommendations today. I'm sure lots of you have already heard about this book, by Eddie Gibbs and Ryan Bolger. If you want to read some reviews/blog posts about the book you can go here.

In terms of my series here, on 'What is the emerging church?', this great books offers some suggestions of key values/practice/beliefs that might characterize the emerging church. Again I get nervous at making a list of things, and think the authors would be too. Also unless you are in a new form of church, outside existing churches doing something new and innovative, you might feel excluded by this. But having said that I like the 9 factors they identify, and it's something our community aspires to. I'll offer a brief summation here:

1. Re-centering on the kingdom of God. 2. Engaging culture with out a sacred and secular distinction. 3. Communal: Faith as communal experience. 4. Listening to the outsider. 5. Serving those in need without ulterior motives. 6. Involving participants in worship. 6. Valuing Creativity/Arts. 7. Leading through networks than top down hierarchies. 8. Ancient and Avant Garde

Along side this, a book you might not have heard of, but I think is so worth reading, especially if you are in an established church and wanting to engage in mission in our culture, is this book:

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Church on The Edge: Chris Stoddard & Nick Cuthbert £6.39 - UK This book examines how 22 church communities (almost all in the UK), are finding ways to impact their local communities. It's not a book full of ideas of what church might be, but real stories from churches impacting their communities. A powerful and easy to read book that might get overlooked by many in emerging church circles.