19 lessons on church planting movements

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"Tom" helped fuel a church planting movement amongst fervent monotheists somewhere in the Middle East—until his cover was blown and he was deported. The great thing about movements is they don't rely on foreigners for their continued success. Tom still resources the local workers from a distance as the movement continues to expand.

Tom and his team came up with these nineteen lessons they are learning about evangelism and church planting among fervent monotheists:

  1. God at work!! HE is building HIS church!
  2. Awareness raising over years. We spent a few years envisioning pastors and leaders and whilst they are not the people who did the work, they have released people
  3. Work of others. We feel we are building on the work that many other people and ministries have done. We are part of a jigsaw
  4. Being a catalyst. We do not aim to do all the work ourselves, but mobilise others to minister
  5. Strategic planning. This is not something that comes naturally in the culture, but we have trained people how to do it
  6. Mobilising the harvest force. As many as possible! We have helped other ministries focus on cp as well
  7. Local coordinators and volunteers. We fund coordinators who in turn mobilise thousands of volunteers
  8. Working with the local churches. As far as possible.
  9. Flat structures & local responsibility. So that is doesn't become dependent on a few. The emphasis has been 'release' rather than 'control'. We created local groups of leaders (mature people from existing churches) to serve the new groups.
  10. Creative ideas—"mulid". We had a 'mulid' or festival and produced some creative materials and songs on cassettes, but have not gotten into the trap of patenting the idea and trying the same idea everywhere!
  11. Transform evangelism to church planting. A lot of evangelism was being done in Egypt, but not progressing into cp
  12. Appropriate materials and models. We have used very simple training materials and churches
  13. Partnership. With churches and ministries
  14. Training and mentoring. We have done a lot of training
  15. Simple concept of church. We have spent a lot of time in helping people change their paradigm to understand that the church is not a building plus an ordained pastor.
  16. Use of the home. Using the home and inductive Bible studies have been key
  17. Unity. In our own teams, and also in towns and villages
  18. Holistic ministry. We have helped with medical issues and literacy
  19. Prayer and action. We do not like separating prayer from action - prayer as we work!

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