This fifth Missional Church Series volume seeks to bring historical clarity, biblical and theological substance, and practical guidance to church planting. The nine contributors -- many of them experienced church-planting pastors -- offer diverse yet cohesive perspectives on the Spirit's missional church planting in our time.
Section One presents three essays which address missional church planting as a theological practice, with particular attention given to the activity of the Holy Spirit within the context of God's Trinitarian life. Section Two grounds church planting initiatives in the generative soil of story. The two essays in this section narrate how specific congregations provide glimpses of the Holy Spirit in action, supplying the reader with hints for how history might lead to future expectations of the Holy Spirit's ongoing church planting activity.
Three essays in Section Three focus on new frontiers appearing on the church planting horizon, and an epilogue provides a sermon which orients church planting efforts in witness that flows from the heart of God. In this book readers will find fresh insights into an exciting new future created and led by the Spirit.
Mary Sue Dehmlow Dreier
Mary Sue Dehmlow Dreier is associate professor of pastoral care and missional leadership at Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary, Columbia, South Carolina, and an ordained Lutheran minister who served twenty-five years as a pastor in rural, suburban, and church-planting calls.
"This is not a `how to plant missionary congregations' book, nor is it a theological treatise on church planting. Rather it is a resource for leaders who recognize the movement of the Spirit in our midst, are committed to planting congregations, and are open to revisiting the theological, theoretical, and historical claims for church planting."
Evangelical Missions Quarterly
"This book provides original scholarship for missional church planting, and thus contributes fresh insights to the missional church conversation, as well as to the increasing literature on church planting. Together, these essays present a diverse, but cohesive story of missionary church planting in the power of the Spirit for our time."
Sharing the Practice
"If you are interested in church planting either as a venture of your own or because you believe the church should reproduce itself then you should read this book."
"This text contributes much to the growing understanding of what it means to be missional in North America. Building on the work of Ed Stetzer, Aubrey Malphurs, and Leslie Newbigin, et al., Dreier expands the conversation of church planting into missional identity. In nine chapters divided into three sections the authors provide a theological framework, a pneumatological perspective, and a contemporary expression of the missional church movement. . . . I recommend the use of this book in churches, church planting agencies, Bible colleges, seminaries and universities. The use of multiple authors provides varying perspectives, a wealth of experience in church planting, and fresh strategies for missional communities."
George R. Hunsberger
-- Western Theological Seminary
"Finally -- the absolutely necessary conversation between missional theology, church planting, and the divine agency of the Holy Spirit! Those who plant new churches, or facilitate those plantings, or educate and mentor planters, dare not miss a careful reading of this fresh articulation of what is happening as the Spirit births new churches and what that means."
-- Princeton Theological Seminary
"Missional theology seeks to center every theological discipline on the missional vocation of the church as an outworking of the missionary nature and action of the triune God. This collection of essays addresses the theology and work of the Holy Spirit in the formation of witnessing congregations. It should be welcomed as a constructive resource for a much-needed missional pneumatology."
"The greatest strength of this book is its development of neglected themes. . . . The book is a needed contribution to the missional church discussion, and pastors and church-planters will find it a helpful resource."