Peter Roennfeldt has been planting churches for longer than I can remember. He has children, grand children and great grand children all over the globe.
Recently he and his wife Judy returned to Papua New Guinea where it all began. They visited the fourteen churches they planted in the capital Port Moresby before leaving in 1979. They met believers from other churches they planted around the country.
Here are Peter's refections on the lessons of the last thirty years.
What you plant is what you reap. In the 1970s we planted churches – rather than churches that multiply. The result is that most the churches planted then have gotten bigger, but the priority has not been on multiplication!
Plant churches that multiply. If I were to have my time over again – I would cultivate the principles of multiplication into the DNA of every church plant! It is exciting to see the growth – but, it could be even greater!
You can never envisage the impact of a church plant. Thirty years ago it was not possible to envisage the growth of these churches – over 10,000 believers today!
Invest in future leaders. In those years many church plants were focused upon reaching and involving university students and future country leaders – and this has resulted in new churches all over the country.
Be proactive. Those fourteen new churches in Port Moresby would not have been planted without the efforts of dedicated teams of members and planted – but there should be hundreds!
Denominations do not plant churches – local churches, members and pastors do. Denominations that do not affirm people, empowering and releasing them, will never reach their potential. Micromanagement and control are not environments of growth, reproduction and multiplication.