The Turnaround Church: Inspiration and Tools for Life-Sustaining Change

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9781566993937: The Turnaround Church: Inspiration and Tools for Life-Sustaining Change
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The Turnaround Church is the story of Wollaston Congregational Church United Church of Christ, a 130-year-old congregation that once was thriving in ministry, membership, mission, music, and money. For half a century, however, the church had slowly declined and was considering closing its doors. The two dozen remaining members knew they had to change, but did not know how. They had very little money left, but they were willing to risk it all. With few resources, members hired Mary Louise Gifford, a new seminary graduate, to be their full-time minister. Wollaston is now a vibrant, Spirit-filled faith community—a turnaround church. Changes in worship, stewardship, and priorities, combined with the congregation's resilience and Gifford's optimistic leadership, have transformed this church. Gifford tells us how. Addressing a wide audience, Gifford shows church leaders they have options and reason for hope. People in dying churches will find assurance that they are still a part of the body of Christ. Clergy serving these struggling churches will discover tools and resources to help them guide change. Judicatory leaders will appreciate an inspiring story they can tell about a church that turned around in spite of the odds. The Turnaround Church, while not a prescription for all churches, is a call to make long-lasting, life-sustaining changes.

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About the Author:

Mary Louise Gifford is pastor of the Wollaston Congregational Church United Church of Christ and co-chair of the Massachusetts Conference's Commission for Evangelism and Church Vitality. Mary Louise is a certified vitality coach for the Conference and a field education supervisor for Andover Newton Theological School students.

Review:

With imagination and vision, Mary Louise Gifford proves that decline in mainline Protestantism is not the final word for the Church. Rebirth is possible! In her insightful telling of Wollaston Congregational Church's remarkable turnaround, she offers the key to revitalizing churches across the country. This book is a great resource for all pastors and leaders dreaming bigger dreams for their own turnaround church. --Cameron Trimble, Associate Conference Minister of the Southeast Conference and National New Church Development Advisor for Local Church Ministries, UCC

By breaking a daunting and overwhelming topic--turning a declining church around--into manageable categories, Dr. Gifford provides readers with clarity and hope. Clarity as to the issues and concerns leaders need to address if they want their churches to survive, and hope that there are many churches in decline that deserve a second (or third, or fourth) chance to thrive. Worship, stewardship, and leadership might not be all it takes to turn a church around, but as guideposts for pointing toward what it means to create a 'new church start in an old church building,' this book is a tremendously valuable resource. --Sarah B. Drummond, author of Holy Clarity: The Practice of Planning and Evaluation

Many want to turn a church around. Few know how. This book is the resurrection dash between the nitty and the gritty. From sick to well, leaky roofs to open minds, Wollaston Congregational Church's story deserves your full attention--for the how and the why to turn a church around --Donna Schaper, Senior Minister, Judson Memorial Church, New York, New York

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Book Description Alban Institute, Inc, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Turnaround Church is the story of Wollaston Congregational Church United Church of Christ, a 130-year-old congregation that once was thriving in ministry, membership, mission, music, and money. For half a century, however, the church had slowly declined and was considering closing its doors. The two dozen remaining members knew they had to change, but did not know how. They had very little money left, but they were willing to risk it all. With few resources, members hired Mary Louise Gifford, a new seminary graduate, to be their full-time minister. Wollaston is now a vibrant, Spirit-filled faith community--a turnaround church. Changes in worship, stewardship, and priorities, combined with the congregation s resilience and Gifford s optimistic leadership, have transformed this church. Gifford tells us how. Addressing a wide audience, Gifford shows church leaders they have options and reason for hope. People in dying churches will find assurance that they are still a part of the body of Christ. Clergy serving these struggling churches will discover tools and resources to help them guide change. Judicatory leaders will appreciate an inspiring story they can tell about a church that turned around in spite of the odds. The Turnaround Church, while not a prescription for all churches, is a call to make long-lasting, life-sustaining changes. Seller Inventory # ANB9781566993937

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Book Description Alban Institute, Inc, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Turnaround Church is the story of Wollaston Congregational Church United Church of Christ, a 130-year-old congregation that once was thriving in ministry, membership, mission, music, and money. For half a century, however, the church had slowly declined and was considering closing its doors. The two dozen remaining members knew they had to change, but did not know how. They had very little money left, but they were willing to risk it all. With few resources, members hired Mary Louise Gifford, a new seminary graduate, to be their full-time minister. Wollaston is now a vibrant, Spirit-filled faith community--a turnaround church. Changes in worship, stewardship, and priorities, combined with the congregation s resilience and Gifford s optimistic leadership, have transformed this church. Gifford tells us how. Addressing a wide audience, Gifford shows church leaders they have options and reason for hope. People in dying churches will find assurance that they are still a part of the body of Christ. Clergy serving these struggling churches will discover tools and resources to help them guide change. Judicatory leaders will appreciate an inspiring story they can tell about a church that turned around in spite of the odds. The Turnaround Church, while not a prescription for all churches, is a call to make long-lasting, life-sustaining changes. Seller Inventory # ANB9781566993937

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