What Every Pastor Should Know: 101 Indispensable Rules of Thumb for Leading Your Church


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by Gary L. McIntosh, Charles Arn. Baker Books, 2013.

One reader of this book says it should be given to every pastor in the United States. That may be hyperbole. Yet, Gary McIntosh has written a book that may indeed be indispensable. McIntosh is President of the Church Growth Network and Professor of Christian Ministry and Leadership at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. With this volume, he has put 27 years of knowledge learned from consulting and teaching, and placed it in a toolkit that is applicable to almost any kind of congregation. There really are 101 rules included. They include rules for welcoming visitors and rules for volunteer involvement. There are rules for managing facilities, as well as rules for leading change. The directions regarding staffing are particularly helpful. Some might rightfully argue that the rules aren’t going to work in every situation. They are backed by experience. If you read the rules as guidelines or as starting places for discussion, then you are going to have a sturdy starting place for each of the 101 congregational topics addressed. Not only should every pastor know these rules, but every board.

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