Towards a Theology of Church Growth (Ashgate Contemporary Ecclesiology)

Towards a Theology of Church Growth (Ashgate Contemporary Ecclesiology)

By: Dr. David Goodhew (author), Bruce N. Kaye (series_editor), Rev. Thomas Hughson (series_editor), Very Revd Prof. Martyn Percy (series_editor)Paperback

1 - 2 weeks availability


Concern about church growth and decline is widespread and contentious, yet theological reflection on church growth is scarce. Reflecting on the Bible, dogmatic theology and church history, this book situates the numerical growth of the church within wider Christian theology. Leading international scholars, including Alister McGrath, Benedicta Ward and C. Kavin Rowe, contribute a spectrum of voices from evangelical, charismatic, liberal and anglo-catholic perspectives. All contributors unite around the importance of seeking church growth, provided this is situated within a nuanced theological framework. This book offers a critique of 'decline theology', which has been influential amongst theologians and churches, and which assumes church growth is impossible and/or unnecessary. The contributors provide rich resources from scripture, doctrine and tradition, to underpin action to promote church growth and to stimulate further theological reflection on the subject. The Archbishop of Canterbury provides the Foreword.

Create a review

About Author

David Goodhew is an Anglican priest and Director of Ministerial Practice at Cranmer Hall, an Anglican theological college which is part of St John's College, Durham, UK. He has worked as a parish priest and as a fellow and chaplain of St Catharine's College, Cambridge. He has published widely in the field of modern British church history and South African history, editing the collection Church Growth in Britain, 1980 to the Present, which was published by Ashgate in 2012.


Contents: Foreword, Justin Welby. Part I Introductory Questions: Towards a Theology of Church Growth: an introduction, David Goodhew; Dialogue, proclamation and the growth of the Church in religiously diverse societies, David Marshall with William Glass. Part II Church Growth and the Bible: The Kingdom of God and church growth in the New Testament, Mark Bonnington; The ecclesiology of Acts, C. Kavin Rowe. Part III Church Growth and Doctrine: Theology, eschatology and church growth, Alister McGrath; Incarnation and church growth, Martin Warner; The prodigal spirit and church growth, Graham Tomlin. Part IV Church Growth: The Historical Setting: Church growth in the early Church, Ivor J. Davidson; Verbum et exemplum docere: Bede, Cuthbert, Aidan and mission in the early English Church, Sr Benedicta Ward; Growing the medieval Church: church growth in theory and practice in Christendom c.1000-c.1500, Miranda Threlfall-Holmes; Divine allurement: Thomas Cranmer and Tudor church growth, Ashley Null; New affections: church growth in Britain: 1750-1970, Dominic Erdozain; Conclusion: transformed, not conformed: towards a theology of church growth, David Goodhew. Index.

Product Details

  • publication date: 20/05/2015
  • ISBN13: 9781472414007
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 260
  • ID: 9781472414007
  • weight: 504
  • ISBN10: 1472414004

Delivery Information

  • Saver Delivery: Yes
  • 1st Class Delivery: Yes
  • Courier Delivery: Yes
  • Store Delivery: Yes

Prices are for internet purchases only. Prices and availability in WHSmith Stores may vary significantly