This morning I received a note announcing the release of a new FREE eBook from Luther Seminary and their Lilly Foundation funded Vibrant Congregations Project. I have not read it yet, but just by walking through the list of contributors, my guess is that everyone should be able to find SOMETHING useful.
While this combination of names may not always be seen in the same group, our common connection is that we are still part of the under-50 crowd and we see some hope and movement in the church. I doubt that any of us naive about what is going on, but merely do not want doom and gloom to define the whole story, especially for a people who claim to believe in new life even out of death.
Here is a little from Editor, David Lose, as he talks about the origin of Renew 52,
I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of people complaining about the decline of the church.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m as aware of the dismal statistics as you are. But I’m tired of hearing them for two reasons. First, precisely because we already know them, I’m just not sure how helpful it is to repeat them to ourselves endlessly. Second, because it’s not the whole story. There is a lot of growth, a lot of potential, and a lot of hope in our congregations as well as decline. Moreover, the Spirit is moving in exciting ways and I am firmly convinced that we are on the cusp of exciting, if unpredictable, renewal.
The 54 contributors to Renew 52 are as follows:
Eric D. Barreto, Kate Blanchard, Nadia Bolz-Weber, Kurt Borgmann, Dan Bredberg, Theresa Cho, Adam J. Copeland, Wayne E. Croft, Lillian Daniel, Keri Day, Nathan Dungan, David L. Everett, David Gambrell, Kenyatta R. Gilbert, Sara Hayden, Christopher A. Henry, Jodi Houge, Terrance Jacob, Rolf A. Jacobson, Sandhya Jha, Tony Jones, Verity A. Jones, Salim Kaderbhai, Karoline Lewis, David J. Lose (editor), Ronnie McBrayer, Joy L. McDonald Coltvet, Meg Peery McLaughlin, Michael D. McLaughlin, Carol Howard Merritt, Joy J. Moore, Martha Moore-Keish, Roger S. Nam, Amy E. Orstad, Anjeanette Perkins, Christian Piatt, Rozella Poston, Russell Rathbun, Nick Reed & Kathy Wolf Reed, Amy Reeder Worley, Peter Rollins, Andrew Root, Kara K. Root, Ryan Sato, Christian Scharen, Amy Thompson Sevimli, Jeffrey Small, Alan Storey, Adam Thomas, Deanna A. Thompson, Daryl Thul, Peter J. Walker, Sarah Walker Cleaveland and me.