Developing an Effective Community Ministry

Developing an Effective Community Ministry

These resources are recommended by Center for Congregations workshop presenter, pastor and educator Kilen Gray. Gray facilitated this workshop in April and October 2016. For more resources, contact the Center at 866-307-2381 or check out the Congregational Resource Guide at

Ammerman, Nancy Tatom, ed. Studying Congregations: A New Handbook. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 1998.
This text is still the definitive congregational self-study resource. Ammerman et al. provide research-based approaches to help congregations examine critical congregational data, including demographics, congregational culture, historical narrative, and congregational identity from the community's perspective. 

Franklin, Robert Michael. Another Day’s Journey: Black Churches Confronting the American Crisis. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1997.
Written while president of the Interdenominational Theological Center in Atlanta, Franklin offers salient analyses of the national and black church cultural landscapes. He provides congregations identified within the traditional black church tradition important considerations of focus for next steps for the development of community ministry.

Sawyer, David. Hope in Conflict: Discovering Wisdom in Congregational Turmoil. Cleveland, OH: Pilgrim Press, 2007.
Congregational conflicts can be profound learning experiences if we learn how to mine the lessons within them. David Sawyer helps congregational leaders with concrete strategies to develop this much-needed skill.

The Association of Religion Data Archives - Quality Data on Religion. Accessed March 28, 2016.
This is an archive of the best and most current national and international data on religion. The Congregational Resource Center provides helpful guides and resources, including a community profile builder which gives quick access to initial community religion data for the immediate area of a particular congregation.

Williams, Cecil, and Janice Mirikitani. Beyond the Possible: 50 Years of Creating Radical Change in a Community Called Glide. First edition. New York, NY: HarperOne, 2013.
One of the most legendary congregational stories of how engaging in community ministry transformed a congregation and saved it from death. Cecil Williams and Janice Mirikitani share their journey and lessons learned on the way to becoming the Glide Memorial United Methodist Church of international repute.