Best Books on Emerging-Missional Church


Kevin Cawley has a Readers Guide for Missional Church. Good list and great books. Anyone who writes a blog series on the emerging church who does not read a few of these good books on the missional church should be slapped silly with their keyboard. Shaping of Things to Come by Hirsch and Frost (blogged it here) is a good start . . wait . . that one is not on Kevin’s Readers Guide . . but it should be.

I was asked by someone recently for a list of essential books written recently on the emerging church. I still think the best stuff is online in blog form, articles and PDF’s but for the book reading population, here are is my choice:

From Australia – Shaping of Things to Come, Alan Hirsch and Mike Frost

From New Zealand – Out of Bounds Church, Steve Taylor

From UK – The Complex Christ, by Kester Brewin

From USA – Emerging Churches, by Ryan Bolger and Eddie Gibbs

From Germany – Houses That Change the World, by Wolfgang Simson

From Canada ? . . . You tell me.


Andrew Jones launched his first internet space in 1997 and has been teaching on related issues for the past 20 years. He travels all the time but lives between Wellington, San Francisco and a hobbit home in Prague.


  • Jon says:

    Anything on what is happening in African contexts? Be it in blog, book, or article form? I’ve been hunting around for a while and haven’t come up with much which led me to wonder if its off the radar, not considered “emerging,” or ignored for more historically nefarious reasons? I’d be curious to hear your take?

  • Charlie Wear says:

    Maybe, instead of books from Canada folks should be pointed to Resonate, Jordon Cooper, Len Hjalmarson, Rob McAlpine, et al. Just a thought…

  • Great suggestion, Charlie. I think there are some books brewing up here, but none out that I know of. My book isn’t about emerging church, so it doesn’t qualify.

  • CTiE Blogosphere Status Report

    And just for the record, Church that is Emerging would be the church that is emerging the new term for the emerging church.
    Jonny Baker has posted some Advent resources, including a version of the nativity that has…

  • andrew says:

    maybe EVERYONE should be pointed to web resources – they are more current, more plentiful, free or usually free, instantly acceessible, able to be aggregated, searched, datamined, commented on, talked back to, they are linked contextually with their author, they remain editable, they form part of the seminary resource library of the future, and so on
    BUT . . . you cannot take them into the toilet.
    Well . . you can actually, but who wants to drop their notebook accidently?

  • Tim says:

    For Canada…
    The Global House Church Movement by Rad Zdero

  • Being Church Where We Live by Ron McKenzie has some good insights on the relationship between ministry, community and the Kingdom of God. The ascension gifts down to earth and makes them practical in a missional environment.
    Another good one from New Zealand

  • andrew says:

    Jon – regarding Africa – lots of great theologians (Lamin Sanneh) and reflective practitioners but not many books.
    i will be in south africa in a few months and will be asking around to see what people are reading there.

  • I think the whole blog/book relationship is a great reason to be more intentional about the use of categories and tags. For instance, if you read my blog to get info on the emerging church, you’ll have to wade through a lot of unrelated stuff, unless you use the appropriate category.
    Also, there is an increasing number of online services offering hardcopies of blogs, such as qoop (dot com, still in beta, but will print directly from your blog engine) and Lulu (dot com, which requires a PDF). Anyone know of others?

  • Kirk Fraser says:

    You wrote: From Canada ? . . . You tell me.
    Here is a Canadian webpage with a start at the definition of church which all who emerge should aspire to:
    For a book not quite along the same lines you may find this entry from Canada also interesting:
    The Global House Church Movement by Rad Zdero PHD
    It seems to me many who emerge simply want to excercise their authority in church instead of having it exercised on them. I prefer getting rid of all human powered authority and reaching out in prayer to Jesus Christ as the one true boss.

  • andrew says:

    i just ordered Rad’s book – it had been on my wish list for some time and i needed a canadian nudge to buy it

  • Book Reccomendations from Tallskinnykiwi and Mark Berry

    Andrew Jones (aka Tallskinnykiwi) and Mark Berry (of Way out West) have both posted a reading list for the Missional minded reader.  Thanks both of you.

  • alan Roxburgh says:

    Believe it or not I am a Canadian and I write books. Guess one is invisible in one’s country or maybe Vancouver just doesn’t count when it comes to being ‘from Canada’. Who can tell!

  • steve says:

    Al Roxburgh’s book Reaching a New Generation is (IMHO) still one of the best books on emerging church – the way it blends missiology with real life practices among a church community.

  • and its Canadian!!!!
    [and thanks alan for the reminder]

  • Bill Kinnon says:

    Or you might want to check out Al’s new books, The Sky is Falling and The Missional Leader (written with Fred Romanuk.) Apparently, there’s even a video about Al’s new book:
    Or so I’m told. 🙂

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