The Church Is Flat – Now Available

My latest book, which is a lightly emended version of my dissertation, is now available.  It’s called, The Church Is Flat: The Relational Ecclesiology of the Emerging Church Movement.  In it, I take my research — both qualitative and quantitative — into eight emergent congregations and put it into conversation with the ecclesiology of Jürgen Moltmann.

The Church Is Flat is available only in electronic form at this time.  If you’re unfamiliar with ebooks, they’re quite easy to read — for instance, you can download a FREE Kindle reading app to your PC, Mac, tablet, or smartphone.  (Or, you could buy a Kindle — I was given one as a gift, and I love it!)  Then, with a couple clicks, you’ll be reading the book!

Purchase The Church Is Flat on Amazon

It’s also available for the Nook at Barnes & Noble.

As a teaser, the table of contents is below:

Preface

Acknowledgements

Note to Readers

Chapter One: The Emerging Church Movement and the Project of Practical Theology Introduction

The “Emerging Church Movement”—A Working Definition

Literature Review

The Emerging Church Movement as a New Social Movement

A Consensus Equilibrium Approach to Practical Theology

The Promise of Transversal Rationality for the ECM

 

Chapter Two: An Inside Look at Eight Emerging Churches

The Changes in American Protestantism Leading to the Emerging Church Movement

Developments in the 1990s—Three Phases of the Emerging Church Movement

Empirical Research Method

Cedar Ridge Community Church, Spencerville, Maryland

Solomon’s Porch, Minneapolis, Minnesota

House of Mercy, St. Paul, Minnesota

Journey, Dallas, Texas

Pathways Church, Denver, Colorado

Church of the Apostles, Seattle, Washington

Jacob’s Well, Kansas City, Missouri

Vintage Faith Church, Santa Cruz, California

Initial Observations

 

Chapter Three: Defining “Practice” and the Core Practices of the Emerging Church Movement

Alasdair MacIntyre and a Neo-Aristotelian Concept of Practice

Jeffrey Stout and the Pragmatist Concept of Practice

Pierre Bourdieu: Strategies, Rules, Force Fields, and Practice

The Limits of “Practice”

Using “Practice” to Investigate the ECM

Communities of Practice and the Promise of Ambiguity

Practices of the Emerging Church Movement

Concrete Practices

Practices of Virtue

Initial Observations

 

Chapter Four: The Relational Ecclesiology of Jürgen Moltmann in Conversation with the Emerging Church Movement

An Overview of Moltmann’s Theological Project

Moltmann in Dialogue with Practical Theology

Moltmann’s Early Ecclesiology

“Friend” as Christological Office

Moltmann’s Later Ecclesiology

Social Trinity as the Basis for a Relational Ecclesiology

Weaknesses in Moltmann’s Ecclesiology

Moltmann and the Emerging Church Movement in Mutual Critique

Political Ecclesiology and Practices of Social Engagement

 

Chapter Five: Pragmatic Suggestions for a Relational Ecclesiology in the Emerging Church Movement

Defining “Relational Ecclesiology”

Practices of a New Social Movement

Theological Commitments and Related Ecclesial Practices

Panentheism and Sacraments of Life

Social Trinity and Practices of Relationality

The Christological Office of “Friend” and Practices of Public Friendship

A Communal Hermeneutic and Practices of Interpretation

Gleanings for the Enterprise of Practical Theology

Conclusion

 

Appendix A: Focus Group and Interview Lines Of Questioning

Focus Group Line of Questioning

Line of Questioning: Founding Pastor Interview

Line of Questioning: Layperson Interview

Appendix B: Church Census Survey

Appendix C: Empirical Data

Appendix D: An Excursus on Modes of Cross-Disciplinary Thinking in Practical Theology

Bibliography

About the Author

Endnotes

  • http://finalinsurrection.blogspot.com/ Lock Rutledge

    The photo of the sign from the Lutheran church brings back a lot of memories. I can go back to the late 90′s when I would park in the church’s parking lot to visit friends in the apartment next door. The church property has been vacant for a long, long time. Over the years you can see the Lutheran church dilapidating from the road.

    http://maps.google.com/maps?q=75243+oram&hl=en&ll=32.813932,-96.734147&spn=0,0.027595&fb=1&gl=us&sqi=2&z=15&layer=c&cbll=32.813918,-96.734126&panoid=0mA2twp4YNVwpv-dzWXRiw&cbp=12,170.2,,2,-2.45

  • http://tracieonthego.com Tracie G

    Purchased. Looking forward to it.

  • http://perpetualadaptation.blogspot.com Steve Swope

    “Available” is a relative term. I’d love to read it; it sounds both interesting and helpful. But I’m not comfortable reading electronically – don’t have a Kindle or Nook, and I’m not getting the app for my computer. I just read and study better with a real book. A shame….


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