Finding Organic Church: A Comprehensive Guide to Starting and Sustaining Authentic Christian Communities – by Frank Viola
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.
You can order the book here: Finding Organic Church