May 2021 Resource
Being the Church in a Post-Pandemic World
Market Square Books, Knoxville, TN
Book Review By:
Premise of the book:
The post-pandemic church will thrive if it reevaluates and adapts its ministry plan to accommodate/address new trends, demographics, and norms.
What this book does:
Kay Kotan has written an outstanding resource on how congregations can adapt and pivot ministry in a post-pandemic world. Kotan acknowledges church will not return to the pre-pandemic ministry traditions and norms. Many adjustments made to minister in a not-in-person environment will remain, in addition to pre-pandemic ways of doing ministry. The author creatively lays out questions for clergy and laity to ask, evaluate, and respond to, in order to adapt their ministry for the future. Chapters conclude with: Bottom Line, Questions to Ponder, and Vision or Vulnerability Assessments. Lastly, this resource has a section called The RE Playbook: Relaunching Your Church in the Post-Pandemic World, which serves as a guide for in-person worship and ministry in a new time and era.
Chapter One- The Pandemic Arrival
Chapter Two- Now What
Chapter Three- Flexibility
Chapter Four- Relational
Chapter Five- Vision
Chapter Six- Spiritually Grounded
Chapter Seven- Commitment
Chapter Eight- Innovative
Chapter Nine- Resilience
Chapter Ten- Next Steps
Appendix- The RE Playbook: Relaunching Your Church in the Post-Pandemic World
What are some important insights:
This resource is filled with great observations, insights, and processes to prepare for the post-pandemic church. Take these quotes for instance: “In the process of visioning, leaders mine for information, interpretation, and cultural trends…” (p.44) “Multiple shifts in a congregation’s vision, necessitates vision recasting. The church will see vision through the church, the community, and the people.” (p. 49) This resource shows how the pandemic has strengthened or opened a willingness to experiment within the church.
Possibilities as a resource for churches:
This is a must-read resource for clergy and laity who want their congregation to flourish and thrive in a post-pandemic environment.
The Rev. Melvin Amerson is a member of the Texas Annual Conference and serves as a Resource Specialist and Area Representative at TMF. His experience and passion lie in encouraging and developing generous, faithful leaders and congregations.
Amerson is the author of Celebrating the Offering, Fruit for Celebrating the Offering, and Stewardship in African American Churches: A New Paradigm, as well as several articles covering topics from generosity, leadership, and visioning. He served as a board member of the Ecumenical Stewardship Center until it was dissolved in 2021 and is currently serving on the Texas Annual Conference Church Leadership Team. He is a nationally recognized generosity consultant known for his engaging presentations. Beyond strengthening congregational leaders, one of his favorite ways to use his skills is to empower Wesley Foundation staff to effectively fund their college ministries.
Melvin obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi, an M.Div degree concentrating in Christian education from Gammon Theological Seminary in Atlanta, Georgia, an Executive Leadership certificate from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and a certificate in Professional Fundraising from Boston University. Recently, he completed a fundraising certificate with the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.