A parish church gathers people together from across the community and is a site of resistance against the increasingly atomized and segregated society in which we live. The social and political revolution at the heart of parish life is people learning to relate to each other in the name of Christ.
Making clear that it is ordinary living which is at the heart of parish life, The Parish Handbook provides an important and accessible resource for all involved in church leadership.
Drawing on a wealth of experience and research, the handbook brings together sociological observation and theological insight to shape sound practical theological reflection. It will appeal to ordinands as much as practising clergy.
"This is a hugely valuable book. It is more than a handbook - it is a guide, a collection of jewel-like insights, a distillation of years of experience that gives a genuine taste of the gritty reality and the sheer privilege of parish life and ministry." -- Rt Rev Graham Tomlin Bishop of Kensington and President of St Mellitus
"Bob Mayo creates a patchwork quilt whose threads are experience, reflection, scripture and vocation. This is an account of real life, real faith, real ministry. Read with care: for you hold in your hands love letters - to God, to ministry, and to the church." -- The Revd Dr Sam Wells, Vicar, St Martin-in-the-Fields
"Bob Mayo writes about parish life with an artist's gift for words joined to a mature theological vision that makes for both compelling and convicting reading. His obvious love for pastoral ministry is of a completely non-sentimental kind. Thus he examines the themes of pastoral life in a way that is open to the mystery of God's presence while never hesitating to cast a self-critical look at the pretensions and foibles of community life. As a result readers will return to their own churches with a new awareness of the kingdom of God at work in, with and under human vulnerabilities." -- Roger Newell, Professor of Religious Studies, George Fox University, USA
"What a delight to find a book which combines practical vignettes of parish life with wise reflections, scriptural insights and spiritual encouragement. Bob, with his contributors, have given us a rich feast of practical wisdom which can be read from cover to cover or dipped into to give renewed and refreshed hope in parish ministry." -- The Revd Dr Neil Evans, Director of Ministry, Diocese of London
"Take decades of ministry and hours of pastoral observations, pass them through the crucible that is Bob Mayo's sharp mind and you are left with The Parish Handbook: a book that the next generation of clergy would be wise to keep within arm's reach" -- Katie Stock, award-winning Christian blogger.
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