While I have been at work on the development and writing of Thin Places: Six Postures for Creating and Practicing Missional Community for over a year, the contents are the culmination of over 10 years of lived theology, story and practice. While I love to write, this project has been uniquely fulfilling as it is the story of the life calling I (and my family!) have given ourselves to. It is not abstract theology or philosophy, but rooted in real relationships and experiences from a band of Jesus followers who are seeking to embody the Church everyday through communion with God, community with one another and deep engagement in our neighborhood.
Further, it is not my book. It is a book about community that was birthed and formed out of community. With the wise and seasoned partnership of Rob Yackley, I am simply stepping back and doing my best to share what God has been and continues to do among those apart NieuCommunities. We hope this sparks the imagination and practice of Jesus’ communities all over the globe.
There is both a book and a DVD small group curriculum (which I must say our publisher — The House Studio — did an INCREDIBLE job producing) that would be ideal for communities and churches to experience together. The small group videos were captured right here on the streets and in the homes of our NieuCommunites’ site here in Golden Hill (San Diego).
I appreciate your interest, am looking forward to hearing your stories of community transformation and would be grateful for any support in passing the word about this!
Pre-Order a Copy!
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Forward by Mark Scandrette, Author of Practicing the Way of Jesus and Executive Director at ReIMAGINE
There is currently an abundance of conversation and resources advocating for the Church to move from her congregational and attractional models towards more holistic, missional embodiments of the Church that submerge deep into the neighborhood. While conversations and resources are often valuable, it is essential that we move from conversation to tangible practices and practical application that enlivens our kingdom imagination for shared mission that is rooted in community and place.
NieuCommunities is a collective of missional-monastic communities scattered around the globe that have been living this out for the past 10 years. In this book, we share our “field notes” — through theology, story and experience – as a way to offer a tangible framework of rooted practices that develop apprentices of Jesus to live on mission in the unique soil of their local context.
While standing on a hill overlooking his community on the Island of Iona, the Celtic monk St. Columba began to pray. He described his experience as a thin place, a place where heaven and earth were only thinly separated. We hope this book sparks the imagination and practice of individuals and communities across the globe to cocreate their own unique thin places that aren’t simply a dream, but a daily and transforming reality.
Here’s what comes with the small group edition:
- DVD containing 6 video sessions with Jon Huckins and Rob Yackley
- 1 copy of Thin Places
- In-depth discussion questions to help you explore each topic
- Video Sessions
Week 1: Introduction & Listening
Week 2: Submerging
Week 3: Inviting
Week 4: Contending
Week 5: Imagining
Week 6: Entrusting
Our publisher just released the complete Submerging video session for free!
What People Are Saying About Thin Places
“I thoroughly loved this book and found myself saying ‘Amen’ at every page. A primer in incarnational mission by those who have lived it and taught it for well over a decade.” ~ Michael Frost, Author of The Shaping of Things to Come and The Road to Missional
“As God continues to call the church to it’s most powerful essence of missional communities, Thin Places offers an inspirational look into practices and postures that forge God’s people together and propel them outward.” ~ Hugh Halter, Author of The Tangible Kingdom, AND: The Gathered and Scattered Church, and Sacrilege
“Over the past decade interest in community life and neighborhood engagement have emerged as significant themes for a new generation of Christ followers who yearn for embodied and holistic spirituality. To thrive, this world-wild movement needs practical resources, born from historical awareness, thoughtful reflection and most importantly lived experience. Thin Places by Jon Huckins, is precisely this kind of storied resource, a tool that can equip groups to practice the way of Jesus and make a life together in their local contexts for the good of the world.” ~ Mark Scandrette, Author of Practicing the Way of Jesus and Executive Director at ReIMAGINE
“The terms ‘missional’ and ‘monastic’ are all too often tossed around by Christians as buzz words, an unfortunate reality given the importance of both terms. That is why ‘Thin Places’ is such a gift to the church! Not only do the authors understand and protect the integrity of both concepts, but bring them together in a way that points us towards an exciting future as God’s people actively living into His kingdom” ~ Jamie Arpin-Ricci, Pastor and Author of The Cost of Community:Jesus, St. Francis & Life in the Kingdom
“The call of faith has always included living in community. The thing is, it is really hard. And there are not enough places where gritty community meets possibility. But, that is what I found in my time with NieuCommunities. These are people who welcomed me in, as a stranger and not only treated me as an honored guest, they made me part of the family. In short, these are people who know what they are doing in creating Christian community and Thin Places not only chronicles their experiences, but invites other communities to imagine how to do the same.” ~ Doug Pagitt, Pastor of Solomon’s Porch in Minneapolis, Author of Preaching Re-Imagined and Church Re-Imagined
“In the modern world of exponential speed and individual mobility, there is a growing hunger for a faith that can be lived out together… where we can be present… where there is an embodied practice… where the gospel becomes tangible in a particular place. NieuCommunities extends the rare gift of a transformative discipleship process that is full-bodied and place-based. Their longevity and fixity is in rich contrast to a world of quick-fix and fast-track! ~ Paul Sparks, Founding Co-Director Parish Collective
“It has become painfully obvious to many that the religious atmosphere of the West has drastically changed. Are we Christians still to be a people animated by the Gospel? If so, than more than ever, we need small bands of people like NieuCommunities that move into neighborhoods with the Gospel in their hearts and shaping how the live to change our communities for the sake of the Kingdom.” ~ Jason Evans, founder of the Ecclesia Collective
“You do not get to clarity alone. Gaining new understanding of what God desires of his followers comes only in the context of community. No one does community better than the NieuCommunities tribe who value both authentic life change as well as missional impact. For over ten years NieuCommunities has formed people who look, love, act, and live like Jesus. This new book chronicles their journey and gives those passionate to live different, for Christ, hope. I highly recommend this read.” ~ Terry Walling, President of Leader Breakthru and Author of Stuck!
There is a “come and see” authenticity about NieuCommunities that is so reminiscent of Jesus calling the disciples out of fishing boats on the shore of Lake Galilee I can almost taste the salt air. At the same time, the “come and see” community is balanced by a “go and do” mission that gives me hope for inside-out change in neighborhoods in the global city. At a time when many are talking about missional communities, NieuCommunities quietly and expertly goes about doing it—forming young men and women and transforming neighborhoods. The vitality of NieuCommunities is less about what is being said than what is being lived. You’ll want to read this book and listen to their story. ~ John Hayes, founder of innerCHANGE and Author of Submerge and Living Deep in a Shallow World.
“As the Church is rediscovering its missional ethos within a post-Christian culture that has been saturated with religious consumerism and nominal commitment, we have needed communities that could model a new path forward for us. NieuCommunities has done just that and I excitedly anticipate a book that captures their journey.” ~ Kyle Osland, Pastor at Icon Church, San Diego.
”I have had the privilege of seeing the NieuCommunities mentoring year up close as a pastor of a church community in which both mentors and apprentices have participated. I can witness to the transforming impact their mentoring has had on people. In an age when we are so often (de)formed by default by the forces of consumerism and individualism, NieuCommunities offers an alternative formation: intentional mentoring relationships shaped by kingdom practices of community, service, cultural engagement, scripture and prayer. Surely this way of mentoring is a vital pathway for re-forming the church to participate in the mission of God.” ~ Tim Dickau, Pastor of Grandview Church, Vancouver, B.C. and Author of Plunging Into the Kingdom Way: Practicing the Shared Strokes of Community, Hospitality, Justice, and Confession
“The Christian Scriptures tells us that in the present life we will receive hundredfold in houses and for many of us that’s hard to believe but at NieuCommunities you get to experience this reality come true. Where there is a NieuCommunities there you will find people with houses ready to share with all who come to find rest and it is by this commitment to hospitality that we experience the Scriptures coming alive.” ~ Darin Petersen of Relational Tithe and The Simple Way