Scazzero, The Emotionally Healthy Church

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Peter Scazzero and Warren Bird, The Emotionally Healthy Church: A Strategy for Discipleship That Actually Changes Lives, Expanded Edition. Zondervan, 2010.

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Referenced in: Summary

This is an excellent, one-of-a-kind volume that helps leaders and churches look deeply into the deeper emotional issues that drive their behavior. It is a good blend of psychology and contemplative spirituality, with a strong integration of The Daily Office, a Rule of Life, the Prayer of Examen, and other spiritual practices.

Not all churches will be willing to look as deeply at themselves as the text suggests, but the tasks are very important for leaders regardless. I make consistent use of this text in my classes on church leadership and spiritual formation. It also enjoys the endorsement of the Willow Creek Association, which has developed a Emotionally Healthy Spirituality Campaign Kit.

From the Publisher

The newly updated and expanded edition of the groundbreaking bestseller, The Emotionally Healthy Church, features a fuller, deeper look at the six principles contained in the original and includes a crucial, additional chapter: Slow Down to Lead with Integrity.

New Life Fellowship in Queens, New York, had it all: powerful teaching, dynamic ministries, an impressive growth rate, and a vision to do great works for God. Things looked good—-but beneath the surface, circumstances were more than just brewing. They were about to boil over, forcing Peter Scazzero to confront needs in his church and himself that went deeper than he’d ever imagined. What he learned about the vital link between emotional health, relational depth, and spiritual maturity can shed new light on painful problems in your own church.

In this revised and expanded edition of his Gold Medallion Award—winning book, Scazzero shares refreshing new insights and a different and challenging slant on what it takes to lead your congregation to wholeness and maturity in Christ. Our churches are in trouble, says Scazzero. They are filled with people who are:

– Unsure how to biblically integrate anger, sadness, and other emotions
– Defensive, incapable of revealing their weaknesses
– Threatened by or intolerant of different viewpoints
– Zealous about ministering at church but blind to their spouses’ loneliness at home
– So involved in ‘serving’ that they fail to take care of themselves
– Prone to withdraw from conflict rather than resolve it

Sharing from New Life Fellowship’s painful but liberating journey, Scazzero reveals exactly how the truth can and does make you free—-not just superficially, but deep down. This expanded edition of The Emotionally Healthy Church not only takes the original six principles further and deeper, but also adds a seventh crucial principle. You’ll acquire knowledge and tools that can help you and others:

  • Look beneath the surface of problems
  • Break the power of past wounds, failures, sins, and circumstances
  • Live a life of brokenness and vulnerability
  • Recognize and honor personal limitations and boundaries
  • Embrace grief and loss
  • Make incarnation your model to love others
  • Slow down to lead with integrity

This new edition shares powerful insights on how contemplative spirituality can help you and your church slow down—-an integral key to spiritual and emotional health. The Emotionally Healthy Church, Updated and Expanded Edition includes story after story of people at New Life whose lives have been changed by the concepts in this book. Open these pages and find out how your church can turn a new corner on the road to spiritual maturity.

About the Authors

Pete Scazzero (MDiv, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) is the founder and senior pastor of New Life Fellowship Church in Queens, New York, a large, multicultural, multiracial church with more than fifty-five nations represented. Today this flagship congregation has grown to an association of churches that includes five different congregations across New York City (four in English, one in Spanish) and two overseas (Dominican Republic and Colombia). Scazzero is also the author of Emotionally Healthy Spirituality and of several highly successful Bible study guides, including Love: The Key to Healthy Relationships and New Life in Christ.

Warren Bird (PhD, Fordham University) serves as a primary researcher and writer for Leadership Network and has more than ten years of church staff and of seminary teaching experience. He has collaboratively written twenty books, all on subjects of church health or church innovation. Warren and his wife live just outside of New York City.

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