Church Restart: A process by which a church long in decline chooses to lay to rest its vision, structure, ministries and history so that its Kingdom resources (members, leaders and assets) can be redirected to launch a new mission-focused church.
A restart combines all of the approaches of church planting with the pastoral work of helping a congregation to die. A restart is different from all other forms of church revitalization in that the existing church chooses a definitive ending characterized by a radical yielding of power and control to new guiding leadership. Churches in need of a restart would not be able to withstand the time and effort required for a drastic revitalization. In fact, most churches ready for a restart have a long history of failed revitalization attempts.
Greg Wiens (Healthy Growing Churches) and Dan Turner (Northwest Community Church) have coauthored a book to help churches that are nearing the end of their life cycle. A church restart is a more drastic revitalization technique that is used to help churches choose a strategic death so they can find new life.