Searcy, Connect, How to Double Your Number of Volunteers

Searcy-Nelson-Connect Amazon.com

Nelson Searcy and Jennifer Dykes Henson, Connect: How to Double Your Number of Volunteers. Baker Books, 2012.

Related volume: Searcy, Fusion: Turning First-Time Guests into Fully-Engaged Members of Your Church

Referenced in:

LifeandLeadership.com Summary

While the subtitle suggests a focus on “volunteers,” the emphasis is on designing a ministry system that helps grow and reproduce servants. Searcy lays out four clear steps for creating an effective ministry system:

  1. Clarify your theology of ministry.
  2. Create first-serve opportunties.
  3. Cultivate a ministry ladder.
  4. Celebrate and reproduce servants.

This is a simple, thorough discussion of what is often called “involvement,” “discipleship,” or “volunteer” ministry, based on Searcy’s many years of experience.

**For a summary, click here for the Kindle Version, and download the free sample. If you don’t have a free Kindle Reader on your computer, click here.

Publisher’s Description

What if your church had more volunteers than you knew what to do with?

Sound far-fetched? It doesn’t have to be. Connect uncovers the secret to doubling your volunteer base in as little as one day. Yes, you read that right.

This step-by-step guide shows you how to create a culture that attracts, keeps, and grows volunteers. It gives you the practical insight and tools you need to effectively involve people in serving your local church. You’ll learn how to help people see the importance of serving, how to continually raise up new volunteers, how to really delegate, and more.


“I can’t say enough about the volunteer system Nelson outlines in Connect. Before implementing it, I felt like we were always behind in getting people onto volunteer teams each week. But since we launched this system, the constant pressure and weekly chaos have faded. Now, we have over 1,000 excited volunteers show up Sunday after Sunday, ready to serve! For years, our church has experienced uncommon growth trends—something we never could have sustained without a good volunteer system in place. Everywhere I go, I find myself recommending this and all of Nelson’s systems to pastors who truly want to maximize the potential in their churches. Read this book with your team!”—Ryan Meeks, lead pastor, Eastlake Church, Seattle and Bothel, WA

“Connect is a great book on volunteering to mobilize your church. Searcy details a clear, practical approach for getting people connected with the serving opportunities that will grow them personally and grow the church as whole. If every church leader read Connect and applied its teaching, the number of people actively engaged in serving God’s kingdom would explode! Just imagine what that could mean for ministry both locally and around the world. I know you will be revisiting these pages time and time again!”—Steve Gladen, pastor of small groups, Saddleback Church; author of Small Groups with Purpose and Leading Small Groups with Purpose

“Nelson Searcy has done it again. With more than twenty years of experience down in the trenches of local church ministry, he has developed a clear and compelling system for moving people into ministry. His simple tools and well-defined strategy are easily transferable, no matter what your ministry setting or challenges. Most importantly, Connect will help you ‘connect’ your people to life-giving service that is meaningful, sustainable, and enjoyable.”—Lance Witt, founder of Replenish Ministries

“No one, to my knowledge, is as good at developing systems for recruiting, training, and deploying people in ministry as is Nelson Searcy. In his newest book, Connect, Searcy addresses the principles and theology of volunteer ministry. Just as important, however, he shows the processes and procedures that actually work. Church leaders who are struggling to find volunteers will find Connect a valuable resource.”—Gary L. McIntosh, professor, Christian ministry and leadership, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University

“God had grown our church to about three hundred in attendance when it became clear that we would not grow any further than I was able to grow as a leader. God used Nelson’s coaching and systems to grow North Star to 2,000 in attendance. Thanks in particular to the Connect system, our volunteers have outpaced that growth. I don’t have to worry about things getting done because I have such a strong, consistent group of volunteers who are passionate about serving. That takes pressure off of my shoulders and frees me up to focus on teaching and leading. This book is a gift!”—Marty Martin, senior pastor, North Star Church, Panama City, FL

“God has called church leaders to equip the saints to do the work of the ministry. Connect provides an effective system to make that happen. It is packed with helpful ideas. I am a raving fan of Nelson Searcy and have learned so much from his resources. This book will change your life and those around you.”—Steve Reynolds, lead pastor, Capital Baptist Church, Annandale, VA; author of Bod4God

About the Author

Nelson Searcy served as the director of The Purpose Driven Community at Saddleback Church before starting The Journey Church of the City in New York City in 2002. He and his 2,000-member church appear routinely on lists such as The 50 Most Influential Churches and The 25 Most Innovative Leaders. The Journey is a multi-site church with locations across New York City and Boca Raton, Florida. His newsletter for pastors and church leaders, Church Leader Insights, now reaches more than 80,000 subscribers and continues to grow by hundreds each month. Searcy lives in New York City.

Jennifer Dykes Henson is a freelance writer based in New York City. She has served as a writer/producer and ministry consultant to organizations across the East Coast. Jennifer also worked with Dr. Charles Stanley as the manager of marketing communications for In Touch Ministries in Atlanta, Georgia.

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