The Connecting Church: Beyond Small Groups to Authentic CommunityThe Connecting Church: Beyond Small Groups to Authentic Community
Randy Frazee
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I once heard a pastor say that while "community is the one thing contemporary people want, it is also the thing they are least prepared to receive." He went on to discuss how: individualism has divided our communities, ambition has taught us to value competition over cooperation and our schedules leave little time to invest in the lives of our loved ones andthe common life of our communities. Randy Frazee'sThe Connecting Church identifies and develops many of the same themes, which were explored in that intriguing sermon. In The Connecting Church Frazee paints a beautiful portrait of biblical community and talks about the sacrifices we will have to make in order to experience life together. If you are ready to move beyond small groups and develop authentic community this book is required reading.
     

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THE CONNECTING CHURCH
by Randy Frazee

God created us for community. He implanted in our hearts a "longing for belonging." Unfortunately, trends in American society foster loneliness instead of community and leave this longing unsatisfied. These trends are even in the church. They frustrate our efforts to build authentic community through small groups and Sunday school classes.

Frazee confronts these powerful trends and offers a biblically based model for building real community in the local church.

According to Frazee, the three powerful trends that frustrate community building are individualism, isolation, and consumerism. To develop authentic community, the local church needs to develop a common purpose (which counteracts individualism), meet at a common place (which counteracts isolation), and share common possessions (which counteracts consumerism).

Frazee is the senior pastor of Pantego Bible Church in Arlington, Texas. The model he presents is used at Pantego Bible Church. His insistence on placing small groups within walking distance of the members' homes is the book's most innovative suggestion.

The Connecting Church is clearly and simply written. It utilizes solid biblical exegesis and keen social analysis to offer practical suggestions for how the church can satisfy the God-given longing for belonging. I highly recommend this book to pastors and lay leaders who are committed to building authentic Christian community in their churches.

Reviewed by George P. Wood, associate pastor, SeaCoast Community Church, Seal Beach, California enrichment - A Journal for Pentecostal Ministry, Summer 2002, page 132, www.enrichmentjournal.ag.org