Erwin McManus

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Erwin Raphael McManus (1958-) is the lead pastor of Mosaic Church, a Christian community in Los Angeles, California which has been named one of the most influential and innovative churches in America. He made his name first by becoming a popular speaker on issues related to postmodernism and postmodern Christianity, but also writes and lectures on topics such as culture, change, creativity, and leadership. McManus was named by Church Report in January 2007 as one of the "50 Most Influential Christians in America."

McManus earned his M.Div. from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Serving as a church planter in Dallas he began two congregations where he worked among the urban poor. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, he, with brother Alex, were employed to replace what have been called "outdated and stagnant" church leadership teams with "younger and fresher thinkers". He moved to Los Angeles in 1993 where he eventually took the pastor role at Mosaic. Since the 1990s McManus has been associated with the Leadership Network and he partners with Bethel Seminary as a lecturer and futurist.

He headed up the creation of the Mosaic Alliance, a loose association of like-minded churches. He also presides over the "Origins" conference held yearly at Mosaic. McManus was instrumental in organizing the "Rethink" conference saying "We need to know where things are going so we can get there first" and he catalyzed The Barbarian Project internship, "The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is Christianity."

Erwin spoke at The Global Leadership Summit, which is put on by Willow Creek Association and founded by Bill Hybels.

McManus has introduced various psychological personality metrics to the church such as the Myers-Briggs type indicator and Gallup's Strengths Finder. In recent years he has also founded Awaken, a collection of poets, artists, film makers and humanitarians whose stated goal is "maximizing the divine potential" in every human being.

  • An Unstoppable Force: Daring to Become the Church God Had in Mind (2001)
  • Uprising: A Revolution of the Soul (2003)
  • The Church in Emerging Culture: Five Perspectives (2003), with Brian McLaren, Leonard Sweet, Andy Crouch, Michael Horton and Frederica Matthewes-Green
  • The Barbarian Way: Unleash the Untamed Faith Within (2005)
  • Chasing Daylight: Seize the Power of Every Moment (2006)
  • Stand Against the Wind: Fuel for the Revolution of Your Soul (2006)
  • Seizing Your Divine Moment (2006)
  • Soul Cravings (2006)
  • Wide Awake: The Future Is Waiting Within You (2008)
  • Uprising Workbook: A Revolution of the Soul (2008)
  • Crave: An Exploration of the Human Spirit (2010)
  • Stand Against the Wind: Awaken the Hero Within (2010)
  • Life's Toughest Questions (2010)
  • The Controversial Jesus (2010)
  • Unleashed: Release the Untamed Faith Within (2011)
  • An Unstoppable Force: Daring to Become the Church God Had in Mind (2013)
  • The Artisan Soul: Crafting Your Life into a Work of Art (2015)
  • The Last Arrow: Save Nothing for the Next Life (2017)
  • The Way of the Warrior: An Ancient Path to Inner Peace (2019)




MOSAIC - A community of FAITH, LOVE and HOPE

  • McManus endorsed The Emerging Church, by Dan Kimball.
  • An Unstoppable Force: Daring to Become the Church God Had in Mind (2013) is endorsed by Leonard Sweet.
  • Unleashed: Release the Untamed Faith Within (2011), Acknowledgements, p. 143-144: Also thanks to the Willow Creek Association for helping me to get this message out.
  • McManus in a telephone interview with Christian Examiner, Mars 2015, article "Pastor, noted author takes uncivil approach in new offering":

My goal is to destroy Christianity as a world religion and be a recatalyst for the movement of Jesus Christ ... Some people are upset with me because it sounds like I'm anti-Christian.  I think they might be right.

The greatest enemy to the movement of Jesus Christ is "Christianity".

  • McManus refers to "Barbarians" in a positive light in his The Barbarian Way.  He describes on p. 6 how Christians should be: "They [Barbarians] see Christianity as a world religion, in many ways no different from any other religious system.  Whether Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, or Christianity, they're not about religion; they're about advancing the revolution Jesus started tho thousand years ago."
  • McManus' brother Alex McManus authored Into the Mystic (a promotion of mysticism). Erwin writes in The Barbarian Way, p. 63: "We are called to join the barbarian tribe and to embrace our call as mystical warriors."
  • In an interview with Relevant Magazine, McManus explains the "core" of his book: The Barbarian Way was, in some sense, trying to create a volate fuel to get people to step out and act.  It's pretty hard to get a whole group of people moving togethe as individuals who are stepping into a more mystical, faith-oriented, dynamic kind of experience with Christ.  So, I think Barbarian Way was my attempt to say "Look, underneath what looks like invention, inovation and creativity is really a core mysticism that hears from God, and what is fueling this is something really ancient."  That's what was really the core of The Barbarian Way.

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