This book presents the biological principle of emergence and applies it to culture shifting in congregations. The universe knows how to do life from the inside-out. By moving away from cultures of command and control to a more natural organic model, congregations discover the key to their power and the secret to sustained vitality.
What does church look like in the 21st century? Sanguin uses evolutionary theology to tell the story of the congregation he has served over the past 14 years. He describes the principles, practices and programs that have brought this congregation back to life, despite being located in a neighborhood that consistently rates the highest in North America polling in the category of “no religion”. The book makes a great study guide for church groups who are asking the question: “Where do we begin?” It has the advantage of having been written from the trenches of a congregation needing to balance the budget, grow in numbers, and help its members radiate and share God’s love for our world.
Realizing the importance of creating a practical guide for both ministers and congregations seeking to shift their congregational culture towards a progressive form of Christianity, Bruce Sanguin grounds The Emerging Church in the experience of his own congregation, Canadian Memorial United, as way to establish context and to share real-life examples. At the same time, he peppers the book with insights from leading edge science, including the science of emergence, chaos theory, quantum physics, field theory, spiral dynamics, and evolutionary science. Written in language lay people can understand, The Emerging Church is filled with no-nonsense, realistic advice on the pitfalls and possibilities of following the vision of the emerging Christian way. Nudged by an evolutionary Spirit and drawn by the love of Christ into an emerging future, the church of the loving and living Christ may be the “best kept secret of our day.” In The Emerging Church, Bruce Sanguin shares “the secret” with anyone and everyone willing to listen.
The book provides the theological basis for making this shift as well some very pragmatic steps to help your congregation come alive in Christ. (Read the Prologue for The Emerging Church).
The book is published by Woodlake Books.
Here’s what leading edge thinkers are saying about the book.
“With The Emerging Church Bruce Sanguin dares to walk his talk and to resurrect church life using models from the new cosmology, creation spirituality and his own twenty years of ministry in the trenches. He challenges and he teaches, he offers strategies and he heals, he gives hope and he leads–all vital work if Spirit is to awaken communities to move beyond mere survival to genuine flourishing and deep service. Recommended for all eager to see church renewed!”
~Matthew Fox, author of Original Blessing, A New Reformation, A Spirituality Named Compassion
“There is hope for the established Canadian church! Bruce’s experience points to the attitude changes, organizational shifts, and leadership strategies that are necessary for a church to thrive in the emerging world. He models the hard work, spiritual life, and persistent mission demanded of Christ-followers today.”
President, Easum Bandy and Associates