Towns, Wagner, and Rainer, The Everychurch Guide to Growth

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Elmer Towns, C. Peter Wagner, and Thom S. Rainer, The Everychurch Guide to Growth: How Any Plateaued Church Can Grow. Broadman and Holman, 1998.

Referenced in: Church Leadership – Size Dynamics and Transitions

LifeandLeadership Summary

This resource is broken down into three sections:

  1. C. Peter Wagner on breaking the 200 barrier
  2. Thom S. Rainer on breaking the 400 barrier
  3. Elmer Towns on breaking the 1,000 barrier

Each identifies the specific barriers at each stage and action steps on breaking those barriers. It is one of the few books that addresses the 1,000 barrier. It is not as accessible or readable as one expects from these three authors, and is not their best material. Expect strong reflections of the church growth philosophy. A helpful, but dated, bibliography appears at the end. On the 200 barrier, use this as a supplement to Kevin Martin’s The Myth of the 200 Barrier. On the 400 and 1,000 barrier, use it as a supplement to McIntosh’s section on the subject in Taking Your Church to the Next Level.

From the Publisher

A growing church is a living church, but much of the attention in church growth today is focused on making big churches bigger. This encouraging new book shows members of small and medium-sized congregations how to revive and expand their ministries as well. Churches of every size tend to plateau in attendance and never break free of their self-imposed limitations or ‘growth barriers’. This book gives detailed, practical instructions for breaking through those barriers to new levels of impact and service in the community. The EveryChurch Guide to Growth rallies church leaders and members to develop plans for strength and solid growth in the future.

About the Author

Elmer Towns is dean of the B.R. Lakin School of Religion at Liberty University, which he cofounded with Jerry Falwell. His books include Fasting for Spiritual Breakthroughs, Praying the Lord’s Prayer for Spiritual Breakthroughs, and Praying the 23rd Psalm. He resides in Lynchburg, Virginia.

C. Peter Wagner is a recognized authority on church growth and spiritual warfare. He is founding president of Global Harvest Ministries and founding chancellor of the Wagner Leadership Institute. He has authored more than sixty-five published works. His outspoken advocacy of praying for the sick, spiritual mapping, identificational repentance, the ministry and role of apostles and prophets in the church today, and deliverance have identified Wagner as a pioneer in the body of Christ. Peter and his wife, Doris, live in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Thom S. Rainer is president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources, one of the largest Christian resource companies worldwide, and the best-selling coauthor of Simple Church. Rainer and his wife, Nellie Jo, have three grown sons and live in Nashville, Tennessee.

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