Radical Sending

Go to Love and Serve

Demi Prentiss, Fletcher Lowe

Oct/2015, 192 Pages, Paperback, 6 x 9

ISBN-13: 9780819231840



As congregations explore their emerging visions, they need support in “equipping the saints” for their day-to-day lives and ministries beyond the doors of the building. The Dismissal — “go in peace, to love and serve the Lord” — becomes as important as the Eucharist in feeding the people for the journey. But churches often fail to focus on this baptismal calling to “go” into the worlds of work, family, and community. This book fills that void, focusing on how the baptized become “go-ers,” providing practical and tested ways of fulfilling that calling.

Go to Love and Serve builds on and complements the work of Stephanie Spellers’ Radical Welcome, which called congregations to move beyond diversity and inclusion to be places where the transforming gifts, voices, and power of marginalized cultures and groups bring new life to the mainline church. Each chapter is followed by discussion questions for use with small groups or for personal reflection.

Demi Prentiss has been a ministry developer at the parish, diocesan, and church-wide levels for twenty-five years, and has seen the transformational effect of refocusing the church outside its own walls. She served as editor for the Episcopal Church Foundation's Finance Resource Guide and is the co-author of Radical Sending: Go to Love and Serve. She lives in Denton, Texas.

J. Fletcher Lowe was a parish priest for 37 years with a passion for empowering the laity for their ministries in daily life, authenticated with the 1979 BCP's focus on the centrality of Baptism. Aside from his parish and diocesan efforts, he co-edited with Linda Grenz Ministry in Daily Life, Living the Baptismal Covenant and compiled Baptism: the Event and the Adventure. He died in 2021.

Radical Sending is ALIVE with stories, insights, and new ideas on how individuals and congregations can take seriously their Christian vocation as part of their daily living. It is a book in my opinion that will enable ordinary radical people to become part of Michael Curry’s “Jesus Movement” as we live out our daily lives here in this time and place.”––Rayford J. Ray, XI Bishop of the Diocese of Northern Michigan

“Pastors, priests, and parishioners: if there's one book you read this year to strengthen your church, please let this be the book. Radical Sending will remind you why church matters so much in the first place, and it will inspire you to seize potential that almost everybody is missing. Highly recommended!”––Brian D. McLaren, author, speaker, and activist (brianmclaren.net)

“There are many reasons to go to church, but the most important one is to be sent forth, together, on a mission that is worthy of our lives. Here is a book that explains not only why this ‘sending forth’ is so central to Christians but also how it can be (and already is being) done in congregations of different sizes and denominations. Buy and give this book to the young adults in your life to let them know that the church is not a refuge from the world but a way to engage with the world in an exciting, meaningful, and holy way.”––Gregory F. Augustine Pierce, author of The World As It Should Be: Living Authentically in the Here-and-Now Kingdom of God

“For far too long, churches have failed to embrace deeply the reality that God’s primary ministers and missionaries are God’s ordinary people in their daily lives and spheres of influence. As the church reawakens to its missional identity, it must shift focus toward equipping ordinary disciples for faithful witness in the world. Radical Sending offers a rich resource for this, grounded in concrete stories and accessible practices.”––Dwight Zscheile, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Congregational Mission and Leadership, Luther Seminary and author of People of the Way and The Agile Church

“In Radical Sending, Prentiss and Lowe have reminded us again that while baptism is the first call to ministry, the baptizing community must not only affirm, equip, and bless its members, but send each member in the name of Jesus. Theirs is a practical guide for reclaiming baptismal theology, re-envisioning the meaning of church, and equipping the saints for ministry in daily life.”––Susanne Watson Epting, author of Unexpected Consequences: The Diaconate Renewed

“Using the imagery of a mountain climbing expedition, Demi and Fletcher prepare us for the journey of living the faith in our daily lives. In addition to helpful historical and theological insights, the authors provide what is hard to find elsewhere: real-life stories of individuals and congregations that have made the journey.”––Dwight DuBois, author of The Scattering: Imagining a Church that Connects Faith and Life

“Drawing on their lifelong experience of passionately promoting and practicing ‘radical sending,’ Demi Prentiss and Fletcher Lowe provocatively challenge Christians to re-imagine and re-invigorate the church’s vocation to shape and equip faithful disciples to join God’s mission in their daily lives in the wider world. Lowe and Prentiss include theological and practical insights from throughout Christian history, draw from many first-hand experiences of contemporary Christians, and provide numerous valuable appendices with ‘how to’ tips for incorporating ‘radical sending’ in today’s church.”––John G. Lewis, DPhil, Director, St. Benedict’s Workshop in San Antonio, Texas

“Ever since the 1979 Prayer Book, we have been proclaiming the Baptismal Covenant but having somewhat of a difficult time living it in our daily life and work. Where do we begin? How do we get our congregations to support and empower us? What does it mean to be sent forth to love and serve the Lord? In this book Demi and Fletcher share their faith journeys and provide keen insights and practical suggestions on contemporary discipleship. Read it, digest it, and make it part of your life.”––Donald V. Romanik, President, Episcopal Church Foundation

“I have referred to the Dismissal in our liturgy as ‘the Great Beginning.’ We have so often looked at it as the end of something, a closer. It is so far from that. For Christians at worship, it is the rally cry to incarnate all of that which we just completed, to put our prayers into action, to put our feet, hands, and heart toward following Jesus’ Way in this world, now. I am so thankful for Radical Sending, which brings to life that notion, and better yet, gives us all a map for the journey.” ––Gregory H. Rickel, Bishop of Olympia

“In Radical Sending: Go to Love and Serve Demi Prentiss and Fletcher Low challenge well-worn assumptions as to what makes a church successful. Their approach, offering both a strong theological base and practical examples, shifts the focus from church as institution to church as “commissioning center,” [alt: “base camp,”] preparing members to practice God’s love in every aspect of their daily lives, in much the same way Jesus sent the seventy out to be Christ in the world. Through reflections, stories, practical approaches, and resources Prentiss and Low provide tools to support congregations interested in becoming a sending congregation.”––Nancy Davidge, Editor, ECF Vital Practices Vestry Resource Guide and Associate Program Director of the Episcopal Church Foundation

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