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Finding Organic Church: A Comprehensive Guide to Starting and Sustaining Authentic Christian Communities (Paperback)


Review
A Book Long Overdue
In my opinion, this book has been long overdue. For many years we have needed a book that draws both from the New Testament and current practical experience in the areas of church planting and sustaining. Some very helpful books from the last century were Watchman Nee's "The Church and the Work" and Roland Allen's "Missionary Practices: St. Paul's or Ours'?" which are both quoted in Viola's new work. However, what has been needed is a fresh look with current real-life experience in this arena. We have needed someone to give modern day language within the context of what God is doing today. Frank Viola does just that in "Finding Organic Church." He skillfully draws from both the New Testament and over twenty-one years of experience planting and working with New Testament style churches. This piece of work will be invaluable to anyone who seeks to be involved in such churches and especially those who feel called by God to plant them. The book is divided into four main parts:

* Planting the Seed - Biblical Principles for Church Planting
* Tilling the Ground - Answers to Questions
* Cultivating the Soil - Practical Steps for Beginning
* Pulling the Weeds - Health and Development
In all of these parts, Viola takes the biological (organic) view of the church, as given in the New Testament, and weaves that theme into all of his points. Then he dives into each one of those areas that include: The need for itinerant church planters, God's way of planting churches, objections and questions, practical help for meetings and community life, the stages of an organic church, the seasons of an organic church, the diseases of an organic church, and how a worker cares for an organic church. This book thoroughly covers the topics of finding, planting, and sustaining organic expressions of the church. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is truly a treasure that is chock full of resources and helpful to anyone involved in or interested in God's way of planting and developing His church on the earth today. - Rebuilders, 2009 --Rebuilders, 2009

The author of "Pagan Christianity?" (with George Barna), "Reimagining Church," and the bestselling "From Eternity to Here" has written a detailed manual on how to start and sustain an organic church. Everything from what to do with the children, to the developmental stages of church growth, to the diseases of an organic church and their cures are all covered in this comprehensive volume. Church planting principles for organic styled churches are packed together with the author's practical experience of living in and starting such churches. Each chapter is full of advice, outlining the unique problems that such churches will face and their solutions. Church planters of all types will benefit from this book as well as those wishing to explore an alternative way of church gathering. Christian Book Reviews, 2009 --Christian Book Reviews

Product Description
From the author of Reimagining Church comes an essential guide that provides practical, effective tools for finding vibrant Christian communities. Driven by a passion for the body of Christ, Frank Viola has written some of today's most authoritative and celebrated works on the growing home, organic, and missional church movements. Now Viola shares practical keys to a healthy and successful church plant. Viola contends that many congregations today are struggling to survive, not because of bad planning, but poor planting. He presents an essential guide for starting and nourishing organic churches in any culture. Drawing from both Scripture and a wealth of experience, Viola offers real-world tools, insights, and practical suggestions so churches won't just grow, but thrive.

A new look at planting and sustaining organic church, September 1, 2009
By Chad Estes (Boise, Idaho, USA)


"Finding Organic Church" is Frank Viola's newest book in his growing library of resources for understanding and operating as the Body of Christ. This book builds upon the work done in the series by detailing how an organic expression of the church is started and can be sustained. It is easy enough to jump right into the discussion with this newest offering, but it will make you hungry for what has come before. Save your pennies, you will want the whole set.

Viola again has done his research on the topic; the chapters are full of quotes and footnotes from other authors. It makes this book an extremely valuable resource for students or potential church planters who have immersed themselves in this discussion. At the same time the writing is friendly and does not read as an academic book. It is both thorough and passionate.

Rather than build a view of church planting around theories, Viola presents principles that he finds in scripture as well as his own church planting experience. His presentation encouraged me to ask questions and to try to understand how I had previously interpreted these passages. He suggests that "most Christians are stuck in the prevailing paradigms that dominate the religious world today." I for one do not want to be a slave to paradigms, but want to be free to discover God's purposes for his beloved bride. This book is helping me in that regard.

Finding Organic Church is presented in four sections:
* Planting the seed - Biblical principles for church planting
* Tilling the ground - answers to questions
* Cultivating the soil - practical steps for beginning
* Pulling the weeds - health and development

Whether you are a student, pastor, church planter or just see yourself as the average, Joe Christian, there is value in this book for you. Even if you don't agree with all of Viola's premises you will be challenged with this discussion and will find great values to hold fast to.

The Practical Answers You've Been Waiting For, September 1, 2009
By Derek Mooney (GA USA)


If you've read Viola's other books, you've likely had a ton of questions about what to do next. This book shares Frank Viola's insights and experience into discovering church as an organic expression of Christ rather than as a religious institution. This book is helpful for those curious about organic church, but also for those looking to plant or care for an organic church. It includes a lot of perspective into the New Testament approach to church planting and care, specifically relating to Paul's ministry in Ephesus, Rome and other cities, how that was a natural extension of Christ's ministry, and how that ministry continues today in an organic way.

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