- Hardcover: 240 pages
- Publisher: B&H Books (May 1, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0805445366
- ISBN-13: 978-0805445367
- Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1 x 8.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 87 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,146 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Comeback Churches: How 300 Churches Turned Around and Yours Can, Too Hardcover – May 1, 2007
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"As a successful pastor, church planter, researcher, and advisor to thousands of churches, Ed Stetzer speaks from a wealth of experience with all kinds of churches. Now, in one volume, your church can benefit from his wisdom. This book is a winner!" -- Dr. Rick Warren, author of The Purpose-Driven Life and The Purpose-Driven Church
"Comeback Churches is more than a pep talk. It's rooted in the 'right stuff' to bring a congregation out of the dismal into the vital." -- Jack W. Hayford, President, International Foursquare Churches, Chancellor, The King's College and Seminary
"Finally, a book of practical advice that is based on research. I have seen it both ways- endless research with little advice, or, much advice with little facts. This book strikes the balance with perfection." -- Elmer Towns, Dean of Liberty University
"First and foremost, it is biblical. Second, it is well researched. And third, it is immensely practical and applicable . . . this book should be in the hands of hundreds of thousands of pastors, staff, and church leaders. Simply stated, it is just that good." -- Thom S. Rainer, author of Simple Church, president/CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources
"This is the most helpful, practical book on church revitalization I've read this century." -- Leonard Sweet, Drew Theological School, George Fox University
From the Inside Flap
The congregant’s concern matches reliable data that shows the North American Church is, in fact, shrinking. The general adult population of the United States may have grown by a predictable fifteen percent in recent years, but the number of unchurched adults has also, meanwhile, increased by a more shocking ninety-two percent (source: The Barna Group).
Perhaps you’ve noticed: large church buildings that were filled in the 1950s and 60s now hold a fraction of their capacity. And recent research suggests that the perceived church growth of the 1970s, 80s, and 90s had more to do with a redistribution of believers than reaching the unchurched.
Overall, our churches are stagnant, in need of a return to healthy evangelistic growth.
Leading missiologist Ed Stetzer sheds new light on a crucial issue in Comeback Churches. Coauthored with pastor Mike Dodson, their exceptionally researched book reports on more than 300 formerly declining congregations across ten different denominations, ringing the bell about what it takes today to revitalize a weakened body of believers.
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During our heyday in the 1980s, we had two services in an auditorium that seats 760 people. Today, we have one service and an average of 100 people in attendance. We're almost 87-percent empty.
But I'm not worried for two reasons. First, I know that God wants us grow. Second, God has provided plenty of tools to help us grow.
One of those tools is Comeback Churches by Ed Stetzer and Mike Dodson. It identifies five crucial issues in revitalizing your church: leadership, vibrant faith, lay ministry, intentional evangelism, and celebrative but orderly worship.
Church revitalization requires strong, change-oriented leadership from pulpit and pew. To make a comeback, your church needs the right people in the right jobs doing the right thing.
But leadership is not everything. Members of comeback churches must also have a faith that is characterized by personal commitment to Jesus and the church's mission, a servant attitude, and strategic prayer.
In revitalized churches, pastors have limited roles, and they invite the laity to exercise their God-given ministries. And the whole church is involved in intentional evangelism, gradually incorporating unbelievers into the community and then into the faith.
Finally, comeback churches have celebrative (but orderly) worship services. More often than not, their musical style is contemporary, and they do everything with excellence.
If, like me, you're the pastor of a church that's seen better days, read Comeback Churches, and discover that your church's best days are still in front of you.