Review of “Tools for Rebuilding”

Tools for Rebuilding: 75 Really, Really Practical Ways to Make Your Parish Better (Ave Maria Press, 2013) lives up to its name as a direct and action-oriented follow up to the broad vision compellingly described in Rebuilt.

The book is organized around different types (i.e. staff, communication, people, weekend, etc.) of tools. Each tool is a pithy phrase and concise explanation of how this could be put to work in a parish setting.

I highly recommend Tools for Rebuilding. It contains solid parish ministry applications for general concepts of leadership and management. For many readers, Tools might be a better fit than Rebuilt, because it’s less likely to be perceived as a one-size fits all solution [a critique that some readers had of Rebuilt]. Tools is clearly designed to be applied and adapted for your ministry setting. Inherent in the title of this book is the key idea that this isn’t a “how to” or “just copy this plan” type of ministry, but something that’s flexible and requires continuous work and improvement. Bottom line: Think like Fr. White and Tom Corcoran–but come up with an application and outcome unique to your parish setting.

In short, Tools for Rebuilding is a must-read for anyone in ministry–even or especially if you didn’t like Rebuilt. This would make a great read for a Pastoral Administration or Ministry Leadership course.

And, if you’re not really into reading yet another book, stay tuned here 🙂 as I’ll be highlighting the 10 most important ideas from this book, as well as some of the concepts that need a little more conversation to be complete.


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