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Transforming the Mainline Church: Lessons in Change from Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Hope.

Transforming the Mainline Church: Lessons in Change from Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Hope by Robert A. Chestnut (Geneva, 2000).

This is Robert Chestnut's story from the time he was called to East Liberty Presbyterian Church in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, a declining and greying congregation, through the next 10 years of struggle, conflict and change. He talks about the internal political struggles in the congregation as he battles to make it more relevant to a generation of seekers. At one point, it seems as if things cannot get any worse; but, then, they do and Chestnut comes close to resigning. All the battles over music and money that church leaders are familiar with are presented here in graphic colour. In the end, the story is one of hope for those who have the courage, perseverance and resilience to hang in.

Although the author would consider himself a liberal, he urges church leaders to accept help wherever they can find it without regard to what side of the theological spectrum it comes from. He was prepared to learn from seeker-sensitive churches as well as from the Taize community. His conviction is that everything we do in the church should be approached as an opportunity for evangelism and church growth.
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Author:Congram, John
Publication:Presbyterian Record
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Jun 1, 2002
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