Many congregational leaders have attended an event or read literature from a “teaching church,” a large congregation that shares with others what it has learned about effective ministry. How often, though, have we gone back to our own congregation and discovered that, what we learned from the teaching church is of limited value in our very different context?
But what if there were a network of teaching churches, of all different sizes and situations, from which to draw guidance and help on how to more faithfully minister in many different settings? That, says Larry Goodpaster, is what the Alabama/West Florida Conference of The United Methodist Church has sought to become. Drawing on his experience as bishop of the Conference, Goodpaster describes what the churches in Alabama/West Florida have learned about reaching the unchurched, and how pastors and other congregational leaders can come together to build such teaching networks in their own area.
From the Circuit Rider review: "Written to provoke dialogue, There’s Power in the Connection is a work that undoubtedly calls attention to what faces the UMC (as well as other mainline churches) in a new millennium. Goodpaster wants to stimulate the dialogue he believes is necessary to the church’s life and health and assist the church in understanding where it has been and what it might be (viii).