The First 10 Years
2008 – 2018
• Auburndale Baptist Church pastoral interns urge Brian Croft to begin to write down the practical wisdom they are being taught in the internship (August).
• Brian Croft begins to make rough notes about what to do on a hospital visit and shares them with his interns (October).
• A first draft of Visit the Sick is written (April)
• Day One offers publishing contract for Visit the Sick (July)
• Mark Dever encourages the book and writes the foreword (September).
• Visit the Sick is published and released in the U.S. and U.K. (January)
• Tim Challies and Justin Taylor promote the book on their widely read blogs and wipes out the U.S. Stock of the book for 2 months (March).
• Brian Croft creates a question/answer blog for pastors to address different practical aspects of pastoral ministry. The blog is called, “Practical Shepherding” (May)
• Visit the Sick goes into a 3rd printing (November).
• Test, Train, Affirm, and Send is released by Day One (April).
• Phil Newton approaches Brian Croft about writing a funeral book (May).
• The Practical Shepherding blog grows into an international market (October).
• Emails from pastors all over the world requesting counsel and advice becomes a weekly occurrence (December).
• Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals is released by Day One (April).
• The core of Practical Shepherding is established as these three areas: The Pastor’s Soul, The Pastor’s Ministry, and The Pastor’s Family (August)).
• Zondervan offers a publishing contract to Brian and Cara Croft to write The Pastor’s Family (September).
• The Pastor’s Fellowship for Practical Theology is launched by Brian Croft, Jim Savastio, Ryan Fullerton, and Rob Gibson (November).
• Brian Croft goes to Africa, Scotland, and England to speak and train pastors, launching the international wing of the ministry.
• Visit the Sick and Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals is translated and printed in China to be used to train pastors in underground seminaries (January).
• Brian Croft presents for the first time the core teaching of The Pastor’s Ministry at a pastor’s conference in Edinburgh, Scotland (February).
• Eric Bancroft and Bryce Butler approach Brian Croft to encourage a needed expansion of Practical Shepherding (June).
• A $50,000 donation is given to launch this expansion of the ministry (August).
• A board of directors is formed, a small staff hired, and Practical Shepherding officially constitutes as a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization (December).
• Jim Savastio becomes the first President of the new Board of Directors for Practical Shepherding (December).
• A logo and new website are created and launched (January).
• Zondervan offers Practical Shepherding an 8-book publishing deal (7-book series and The Pastor’s Ministry) (March).
• The Pastor’s Family is released by Zondervan worldwide (August).
• The Practical Shepherding half day workshop is developed (December).
• The first Practical Shepherding half day workshop happens as a Pre-Conference to the Together for the Gospel Conference hosted at SBTS (April).
• Visit the Sick, Test, Train, Affirm and Send (Renamed: Prepare Them To Shepherd), and Conduct Gospel-Centered Funerals are revised, updated, and published by Zondervan as the first three books in the 7-book series (June).
• The Practical Shepherding website surpasses 20,000 average monthly hits (September).
• Seven new Practical Shepherding books are published by four different publishers.
• The Pastor’s Ministry is released by Zondervan worldwide (March).
• The 7-book Practical Shepherding Series with Zondervan is completed with the release of the last two books (June).
• The Practical Shepherding Podcast, Trench Talk records its first episode (July).
• Translations of books and web articles begin to be seen in multiple languages (March).
• Biblical Church Revitalization is released by Christian Focus (July).
• Biblical Church Revitalization becomes a finalist for book of the year with The Gospel Coalition (November).
• Practical Shepherding books surpasses 50,000 copies in print worldwide (March).
• Over 20 books have been written as Practical Shepherding resources (May).
• 100’s of pastors have been trained in workshops worldwide (August).
• The Pastor’s Fellowship for Practical Theology in Louisville, KY surpasses 200 pastors as directly involved in these meetings (September).
• Books and Articles have been translated into seven different languages (November).
• A women’s ministry is launched by new director Cara Croft to minister to pastor’s wives, women’s ministry leaders, and pastor’s kids (May).
• The Board meets to approve the fundraising and pursuit of a property to establish The Shepherd’s House (June).
• The Pastor’s Soul is released (Evangelical Press) and completes The Pastoral Trilogy and core of the ministry in book form of soul, ministry, and family (July).
• The Practical Shepherding Podcast surpasses 13,000 downloads worldwide in seven months and is on pace to surpass 20,000 downloads by the end of the year (August).
• Will mark our 10-year anniversary when Visit the Sick was first published, and this ministry through the new blog was officially named, “Practical Shepherding.”