After reading T&V,I loved the book, but like most readers, my question was this… “This sounds GREAT, but how do you expect me to DO it?” Evidently that was the world’s most common response to the work because the authors Tony Payne and Colin Marshall went to work trying to tell others exactly how they conceptualized the transition.
At first glance, it seemed deflating. The suggestions seemed a bit “pedestrian” and simplistic. Looking back, it may be because unlike most “church transformation” books, these authors don’t seem to LOATHE you and your church. They don’t write off your church’s history and confessions as the hide bound guarantors of death. They don’t consider your Sunday Service automatically worthless compared to small groups, “missional communities” or a dozen other innovations nobody had ever heard of in Christendom until this generation. They don’t think preaching is passe. They don’t suggest that all the woes of your congregation will be solved by a new church “app”.
So I decided to give The Vine Project my full attention, and I’ve decided it is definitely the starting point that many congregations should consider. I have my opinions about the best resources to use to implement it, but before anything else, I am suggesting that churches that are in any way traditional (i.e. use a building besides a home to meet in) consider The Vine Project as a key approach to transforming what they do without jettisoning everything.
If you’ve ever wondered if your church could survive “Church Transformation” without changing literally everything and splitting it in the process (though literally any change such as the renewed preaching of the Gospel could cause friction)… you need to read the link below: