Dead Church Autopsy


This precise and easy-to-read exposé on how churches die provides simple insights on how to detect slow erosion. After studying similar “common threads,” Thom S. Rainer concludes that many of the churches are (to name a few) holding on to the past (the good old days) too tightly, not looking like their community, controlling an inward focused budget, forgetting about outreach, and rarely praying together.

Many of these churches seemed to face a slow death because of a lack of vision and the missing component of selflessness and compassion. “Those in the church were more concerned about protecting the way they did church than reaching residents of the community.” It’s exciting when you do find a church or pastor with an outward looking passion and mission. I recently spoke to a local pastor and friend who shared with me how their church recently decided to adopt their 100 closest neighbors in loving and non-threatening ways. I’m excited to see what God does through their selfless love!

18595231Some of my favorite quotes come from the chapter on prayer and the church: “Prayer was the lifeblood of the early church.” “Prayer was not an add-on to give them permission to eat a meal. It was serious stuff for a serious group of church members.” Prayer time is where the church discovers “together the question behind the question . . . they begin to understand more clearly.’

This is a book I would recommend to any pastor or church serious about staying alive and making an impact in their community!

B&H Publishing Group provided this book to me for free in exchange for an honest review.


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