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Ave Maria Press Rocks Catholic Parishes with Rebuilt

July 16, 2013

With nearly 30,000 copies sold in only five months, Ave Maria Press’s bestseller Rebuilt: Awakening the Faithful, Reaching the Lost, and Making Church Matter has been exactly what Rev. Michael Roach predicted it would be: “a barn burner.” Ave Maria Press, an apostolate of the U.S. Province of Holy Cross, embodies the congregation’s focus on education, parish, and mission in its publishing program and is thrilled to see the impact Rebuilt is having on parishes — measured both in units sold and in an outpouring of praise from all corners of the Catholic Church.

Ave Maria Press is now in its fifth printing of the book and watched with delight as Rebuilt climbed into the top 1000 books overall on Amazon and continues to hover there, even ranking as the #1 book in Christian ministry and moving between #1 and #5 in Catholicism.

Rebuilt tells a tale familiar to many Catholics — that of a parish on the brink of death — but surprises and delights with the candor, humor, and passion of coauthors Fr. Michael White, pastor of Church of the Nativity, and lay associate Tom Corcoran. White and Corcoran tell how they brought Church of the Nativity back to life and went from a parish of greedy consumers to a community of active, passionate disciples.

As Cardinal Timothy Dolan put it in the book’s foreword, “If you love your parish, read this book!” Dolan’s maxim found resonance in a diversity of Catholics and the praise flowed in — often unsolicited. Msgr. Kevin Irwin, former dean of the School of Theology and Religious Studies at the Catholic University of America, posted a review on Amazon.com stating, “This could be a game changer in revitalizing American Catholic parish life and ministry today, and, hopefully, for decades to come.” U.S. Catholic said that Rebuilt “should be required reading for pastors, new priests, and parish councils." Denise Morency Gannon of The Roncalli Center in Massachusetts said, “I've worked in myriad pastoral settings throughout 47 years of ministry and education. Reading Rebuilt resonated in a way that other books on the subject of ministry cannot.” Matthew Kelly called it “stunningly honest.”

White and Corcoran have been invited to speak at several national Catholic conferences, including the National Association for Lay Ministry in Las Vegas and the ACP Mid-Atlantic Congress in Baltimore. In September 2013, they will deliver the keynote at the International Catholic Stewardship Council’s annual conference. They have also been invited to speak at the 2014 Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, among others.

In November 2013, AMP will respond to the enthusiasm for Rebuilt’s story with White and Corcoran’s strategic sequel, Tools for Rebuilding: 75 Really, Really Practical Ways to Make your Parish Better, which is available now for pre-order.

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