“Shifts are happening in the religious landscape, and churches will either adapt or become irrelevant.”
Rev. Owen Ross
Director of Church Development
North Texas Conference UMC
(Excerpt from the Foreword offered by Rev. Owen Ross,
Inside Out: Everting Ministry Models for the Postmodern Culture)
I am charged with leading church planting, congregational vitalization, and strategic initiatives for the UMC in North Texas. Kay has held a similar position in three different conferences.
Inside Out gives the reader not only an introduction to diversifying income streams but is designed primarily to equip and to empower congregations in their mission. I have seen congregations that were able to diversify their income streams, only to have an alternative income stream to simply fund the hospice care of a dying congregation. The World needs more from the Church than the Church simply seeking to sustain itself.
In the 49th chapter of Isaiah, God says to Isaiah it is too small a thing to restore just the congregation or to gather those who have left. The Church must be outward focused and be the light of the World that we were created to be. Inside Out helps move the Church out of old templates and into the mission field. Inside Out not only inspires but also equips the Church to break out of the molds that hold back our light from shining its brightest.
Finally, I recommend if possible that you do not read this book alone. Inside Out is an interactive instrument “to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:12 NRSVUE). I encourage you to find colleagues or to find others in your congregation with whom you can study and implement this book in community. The Church needs this book now. I am confident your church can use this book now. Shifts are happening in the religious landscape, and churches will either adapt or become irrelevant. Irrelevancy is not an option for the Church today. Therefore, I am honored and eager to commend Inside Out to you. Get ready to evert your church!