Twelve Keys to an Effective Church

Twelve Keys to an Effective Church

This resource list was developed to supplement the Center for Congregations workshop Twelve Keys to an Effective Church, led by researcher, consultant and pastor Kennon Callahan in November 2015. The Center’s mission is to strengthen Indiana congregations by helping them find and use the best resources to address their challenges and opportunities. For additional resources, contact the Center at 866-307-2381 or check out the Congregational Resource Guide at

Callahan, Kennon. Small, Strong Congregations: Creating Strengths and Health for Your Congregation. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass; 2012.
This book chronicles the emergence of congregations that are questioning the bigger-is-better notion in church membership. These congregations are deliberately small, active and happy in their dedication to creating strong church communities that advance God's mission. Step-by-step, Callahan shows congregational leaders how they can develop the values and specific qualities helpful to shape and strengthen their own small congregations. Written to be a hands-on guide, Small, Strong Congregations offers practical suggestions for creating mission and service, compassion and shepherding, community and belonging, and more.

Callahan, Kennon. The Twelve Keys Bible Study. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass; 2010.
The Twelve Keys Bible Study offers a companion volume to the best-selling book, Twelve Keys to an Effective Church.  The Bible Study helps readers put the Twelve Keys for strong healthy congregations in biblical perspective and gives clergy and church leaders biblical resources for each of the twelve keys.  It includes reflections on the scriptures as well as suggestions and questions for study and conversation.  This helpful resource can be used as a guide with individuals, groups, congregations, worship services and retreats.

Callahan, Kennon. Twelve Keys to an Effective Church: Strong, Healthy Congregations Living in the Grace of God. Second  edition. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass; 2010.
Callahan identifies the twelve essential qualities of successful, growing churches and offers all congregations a way to unlock their potential for effective ministry. The Twelve Keys program balances practical planning with theological understanding to help churches function more effectively as they seek to grow and better serve their members.  This is a revised and updated edition of one of the most trusted and authoritative strategic resources for church leaders.

Callahan, Kennon. The Twelve Keys Leaders' Guide: An Approach for Grassroots, Key Leaders, and Pastors Together. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-bass; 2010.
As a companion to Twelve Keys to an Effective Church, the Leader's Guide provides ideas and suggestions on how to lead using the Twelve Keys model, how to handle congregational dynamics, plus guidelines on leading a Twelve Keys Planning Retreat to prepare for the future.