Beyond Megachurch Myths
What We Can Learn from America's Largest Churches

by Scott Thumma and Dave Travis


Publisher: Jossey-Bass

 

Foreword


Finally!  I've waited for this book for a long time.

When Kay and I started Saddleback Church in 1980 we didn't plan on pastoring a megachurch.   Our vision was to pastor a church that reached our community in Orange County.  It sounds simple now, but we really just wanted to bring people into membership, build them up to maturity, train them for their ministry and send them out to fulfill their mission in the world.  We were amazed at how quickly our church grew…and grew…and grew.

Along the way, I met other pastors of large churches and compared stories. These conversations -- along with some convictions I had -- helped form the Purpose Driven paradigm we teach at our conferences.  As I talked to these pastors, it became clear that as our churches grew, so did the chorus of our detractors and critics.  Now, I don't mind honest criticism.  I think it helps take off our rough edges.  But what drove all of us pastors crazy was the critics had no real knowledge of the megachurches they were criticizing!

In Beyond Megachurch Myths, Scott Thumma and Dave Travis finally blow away the myths about megachurches and present facts based on real data and research.  This book helps answer some of the most common misconceptions about megachurches.  The underlying research confirms what I have been saying about the overlooked strengths of megachurches and what they can teach churches of all sizes.

I have a heart for pastors and a passion for growing healthy churches, big and small.  There is no correlation between the size and health of a congregation.  God’s desire to use us is never limited by attendance.  Every church, no matter the size, has a role to play in God's kingdom work, and I encourage you to read this book.  We can learn a lot from each other.

Rick Warren
Pastor, Saddleback Church