The Craft of Church Planting
Exploring the Lost Wisdom of Apprenticeship
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Drawing on insights from the training practices of the English medieval craft guilds, a global survey of 500 church planters, interviews with artists and church planting trainers and the authors’ 30 years of ministry experience, The Craft of Church Planting offers a distinctive and imaginative perspective on the methods used to train future practitioners in the art of church planting.
Demonstrating how training for the next generation of church planting leaders might be informed by the historic master-apprentice model, guild learning communities, creativity and an artisan approach to ministry, this book is a vital resource to inform the methods of training for the next generation of church planters.
Foreword by the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell xi
Part 1 Introductions
1. Personal Introduction 3
2. Background: The Best and Worst of Times 7
3. The Craft of Church Planting 17
Part 2 Wisdom from Scripture and Theology
4. Apprenticeship Training in the Bible 29
5. Towards a Theology of Craft and Creativity 52
Part 3 Wisdom from Tradition and Practice
6. Craft Guilds 71
7. Contemporary Apprenticeship 84
8. Ministerial Formation 97
9. Craft Church Planting 108
Part 4 Wisdom from Experience
10. Exploring Master-Apprenticeship 121
11. Exploring Guild Training Communities 137
12. Exploring and Applying Creativity 147
13. From Principle to Practice: Some Examples of Craft Apprenticeship 159
Part 5 Conclusions
14. Applying a Craft Approach to Training Church Planters 167
15. Five Summary Recommendations 176
16. Restoring the Craft of Church Planting 184
17. Apprenticeship Acknowledgements 189
Selected Bibliography and Recommended Further Reading 195
Index of Biblical and Apocryphal References 205
Index of Subjects and Names 207
"Fascinating and inspiring! Using the metaphor of craftsmanship keeps us person-centred, like Jesus and the apostles, not programme-centred, as we too often become. Reading Christian's words has shed fresh light for me on biblical norms and helped sharpen my own disciple-making practices" -- Paul Harcourt, National Leader, New Wine England
"As a church planter, educator, trainer and mentor, Christian is ideally qualified to write this book. He has coached and discipled hundreds of leaders and enabled the planting of many churches. This book introduces church planting as a craft to be learned, skilfully used and passed on for others to multiply the craft. If we ever create a Guild of Church Planters, Christian will be one of its master craftsmen." -- Ric Thorpe
"Christian is a master at describing the craft of church planting." -- Jill Duff, Bishop of Lancaster