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Best-selling author and ministry leader Thom S. Rainer drew an exceptional response when he posted a 500-word declaration about church membership to his daily blog. "I Am a Church Member" started a conversation about the attitudes and responsibilities of church members -- rather than the functional and theological issues -- that previous new member primers all but ignored. Thoughtfully expanded to book form, I Am a Church Member begins to remedy the outbreak of inactive or barely committed church members, addressing without apology what is expected of those who join a body of believers. When a person's attitude is consistently biblical and healthy, matters of giving, serving, and so forth will fall into place more naturally. Six intentional chapters with study questions guide this rising discussion: 1. I Will Be a Unifying Church Member 2. I Will Not Let the Church Be About My Preferences and Desires 3. I Will Pray for My Church Leaders 4. I Will Lead My Family to Be Healthy Church Members 5. I Will Be a Functioning Member 6. I Will Treasure Church Membership as a Gift
Insights from Effective Churches on New Member Classes and AssimilationFindings from a national study to improve membershipclasses and to motivate current members into activeministryHow do churches move members—both old and new—into ministry? Many church staff and lay leaders knowthey need to start new member classes as a point of entryinto their churches but don’t know how. This book isbased on a national study of effective churches andshows how growing churches implement new memberclasses and motivate their members into ministry.Membership Matters is designed to be a guide forchurch leaders wanting to start or improve a membershipclass. It includes models for classes and examplesof resources such as church covenants, class schedules,and lesson outlines. It also gives direction on motivatinguninvolved members to participate in ministry. Onechapter chronicles an ongoing discussion among pastorsof growing churches that are effectively motivatingmembers to do ministry.
Most church members don't see their churches clearly. In almost all of Thom S. Rainer's consultations, church members perceive their church to be friendly. But as he surveyed guests, he found that the guests typically saw church members as unfriendly. The perception chasm existed because the members were indeed friendly . . . to one another. The guests felt like they crashed a private party. Bestselling author Thom Rainer (I Am a Church Member, Autopsy of a Deceased Church) has a game plan for churches to become more hospitable. In a format that is suitable for church members to read individually or study together, Rainer guides readers toward a practical framework for making a difference for those who visit their church. Churches may use Becoming a Welcoming Church to assess and audit where they are on a spectrum between welcoming and wanting. Additionally, churches can use the companion book We Want You Here to send guests home with a compelling vision for what pastors want every guest to know when they visit.