Slow Church: Cultivating Community in the Patient Way of Jesus

John Pattison (Author) C Christopher Smith (Author)
& 1 more


  • 2014 Readers' Choice Award Winner
  • 2014 Best Books About the Church from Byron Borger, Hearts and Minds Bookstore
Fast food. Fast cars. Fast and furious. Fast forward. Fast . . . church? The church is often idealized (or demonized) as the last bastion of a bygone era, dragging our feet as we're pulled into new moralities and new spiritualities. We guard our doctrine and our piety with great vigilance. But we often fail to notice how quickly we're capitulating, in the structures and practices of our churches, to a culture of unreflective speed, dehumanizing efficiency and dis-integrating isolationism. In the beginning, the church ate together, traveled together and shared in all facets of life. Centered as they were on Jesus, these seemingly mundane activities took on their own significance in the mission of God. In Slow Church, Chris Smith and John Pattison invite us to leave franchise faith behind and enter into the ecology, economy and ethics of the kingdom of God, where people know each other well and love one another as Christ loved the church.

Product Details

$18.00  $16.56
IVP Books
Publish Date
May 06, 2014
5.4 X 0.7 X 8.2 inches | 0.65 pounds

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About the Author

Formerly the managing editor ofCONSPIRE Magazine and deputy editor of the Burnside Writers Collective, Pattison's essays, articles and reviews have appeared in Relevant, Books & Culture and the Englewood Review of Books. He is also a voting member of the National Book Critics Circle. He lives with his wife Kate and their two daughters in Oregon's Mid-Willamette Valley.
Chris's writing has appeared inBooks and Culture, Sojourners, The Christian Century and Indiana Green Living.
Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove is a leader of the new monastic movement and co-founded the Rutba House community in Durham, North Carolina. An associate minister at St. John's Baptist Church in Durham, he also directs the School for Conversion, a partnership among new monastic communities for alternative theological education. His other books include Becoming the Answer to Our Prayers, New Monasticism, and God's Economy.


"Smith and Pattison do a fantastic job presenting an imaginative vision for what the church could be if it chose to reject the fast and McDonaldized views of our culture and exchanged it for a more intentional, organic, communal way of being God's people in this world."--Christopher G. Woznicki, Themelios, April 2015, 40:1
"The authors write clearly and persuasively; each section of the book offers a theoretical and scriptural basis for the ideas discussed and practical suggestions for their implementation."--Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW, April 14, 2014
"Those who are questioning (or despairing over) the temptation of successful, efficient and fast modes of doing church--being part of the 'fast food' culture--will find in this book a helpful way to think about ethical orientations, environment and finances in light of the call of the Gospel. What I think may be particularly helpful is Smith and Pattison's exploration of our understanding of work and the ways Christian communities can encourage people to discriminate between 'good' (meaningful, creative) and 'bad' (depersonalized, isolating) work."--Lina Toth, Regent Reviews, April 2015, 6.2