Marks of the Missional Church

Evidence suggests that the Christian church has entered a historic transition in its relationship to the broader culture. In what some call post-Christendom, the church no longer holds an advantaged position in many places. Some Christians lament this development. Others believe that the disruptive change provides an opportunity for the church’s renovation.

Marks of the Missional Church: Ecclesial Practices for the Sake of the World proposes a journey toward a revitalized ecclesiology. Structured around the four Nicene marks of the church (in reverse order)—apostolic, catholic, holy, one—the authors write from the conviction that the marks not only describe the nature of the church, but also set its rhythm. Ecclesial practices form ways a missional community exemplifies the marks. When the church embodies in concrete acts what it believes, as empowered by the Holy Spirit, the church becomes in real time what it is by God’s design.

Stories from fifteen missional communities show the marks in motion. Prompts and questions will help groups of any size to meaningfully discuss how they might more effectively live into the missio Dei. In Marks of the Missional Church, the authors encourage the church to intentionally engage in those spiritual practices that form it as the body of Christ so it might courageously participate in God’s redemptive mission for the benefit of the whole world.

Marks of the Missional Church: Ecclesial Practices for the Sake of the World is available in paperback and Kindle (forthcoming) formats. Click here for a one-page description of the book (PDF).


“Marks of the Missional Church is unique in that it is a book that you can’t merely read. It’s a book that’s meant to be practiced, prayed, and pondered in the company of others.” ~ Christopher Brown

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Part I: Introduction

1. Early Church Practices: Engagement in God’s Story
2. Signs of Grace: The Harmony and Rhythm of Life Together
3. Credo: We Believe

Part II: Apostolic

4. Apostolic Church: 2 Corinthians 5:14-21
5. Perceptive Listening: Discerning God’s Mission Together
6. Awakening to God: Praying Together
7. Words on the Way: Witnessing of God’s Grace Together

Part III: Catholic

8. Catholic Church: Galatians 3:23-29
9. Strangers Becoming Friends: Offering Hospitality Together
10. Grace, Fellowship, and Service: Living Simply and Generously Together
11. Justice for All: Confronting Evil and Injustice Together

Part IV: Holy

12. Holy Church: 1 Peter 1:13-2:3
13. A Grand Narrative: Feasting on the Scriptures Together
14. Embodied Grace: Receiving the Sacraments Together
15. Finding God in the Ordinary: Reflecting on God’s Character Together

Part V: One

16. One Church: Ephesians 4:1-6
17. Partners in the Gospel: Building Community Together
18. Whatever Love Demands: Serving Compassionately Together
19. Service to God: Worshiping Together