Church planting

178-Becoming a Great Commission church

How does a local church take up the challenge of making disciples and planting churches? Steve Addison talks to David Bareham in Essex in the south of England.

David referred to:

Find out how you can get training.

Our church planting models are broken — Ralph Moore

 Steve Hall, Steve Addison, Relph Moore, Rick Paynter, Dave Lawton, Lloyd Rankin, 2007 Hawaii

Steve Hall, Steve Addison, Relph Moore, Rick Paynter, Dave Lawton, Lloyd Rankin, 2007 Hawaii

Some wisdom from Ralph Moore who has a planted churches and sparked a reproducing movement around the globe.

That's him on my right with a bunch of Aussies and Kiwis I deny ever knowing back in 2007.

For decades we’ve planted mid-size to large Hope Chapels in Hawaii. Mostly shooting for 150 at start, some grew beyond it. Most stabilized around the original size. Some shrank then stabilized. And a couple failed.

But we almost always planted in public schools. Two factors pretty much killed that: A. When others jumped into church planting, the schools became filled with churches. B. A lawsuit against a large church frightened school leadership from renting to churches.

With nowhere to launch, our model is broken. But, that is a good thing. Read on and I’ll tell you why.

How many church plants survive?

I often get asked, “How many church plants survive?

It’s the wrong question.

I remember being a first-time church planter. I understand the angst. You hope for more, but you fear failure. It’s only natural. So sooner or later God has to go to work on our mixed motivations. Painful, but better than living with a desperate need to succeed.

In our second church plant, I learned that God has other agendas than just the survival of one church plant. After two years, we closed it down to the glory of God.

Later I became a coach of church planters. I soon learned that when it comes to success or failure in planting congregational churches, selecting the right planters was everything. Get the selection right and the rate of survival improves dramatically.

Still the wrong question.

Here are the questions you could be asking:

  • How many people, who are far from God will hear the gospel today?
  • How many believers can you train to connect, share, and disciple others?
  • How many new disciples can you form into groups that become churches?
  • How many new churches can you equip to reproduce disciples and churches?
  • How many disciples have children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren in the faith?

Answer these questions correctly and you can stop worrying about the survival of one church plant, and focus on the growth of a movement.

Related

What I learned from Peter

Peter Roennfeldt 201x300

When I catch up with someone like Peter Roennfeldt I expect to learning something.

Our coffee by the lake the other day was no exception. Here are a few insights. . .

Many of us are working hard hoping that somehow that what we do will result in making disciples. It doesn’t and we don’t know why.

Often it’s the “tweaks” that make all the difference. But we can’t see it without input from another practitioner outside our situation.

The couple in Bosnia signed up to make disciples and plant a church. They established many relationships. Yet no one had come to faith and gone onto discipleship. The couple were disappointed.

Many of us are well connected in our communities, but we’re silent witnesses. There are people out there ready to learn more about Jesus, but we’ll never find them if we don’t ask. We need simple methods like Discovery Bible Study, sharing our story, sharing God’s story, praying for needs. Someone like Peter needs to train us and help get us started.

Peter will no doubt circle back with an email, a Skype call or another visit and find out how the new groups are going? He’ll want to know are people coming to faith in Christ? Are any groups reproducing? How will you help the groups form into churches? How can you train others to do what you are doing?

Get some basic training. Start reaching out. But don’t go the journey alone. Make sure you have other practitioners and mentors like Peter speaking into your life and ministry.

What I learned from Peter

Peter Roennfeldt 201x300

When I catch up with someone like Peter Roennfeldt I expect to learning something.

Our coffee by the lake the other day was no exception. Here are a few insights. . .

Many of us are working hard hoping that somehow that what we do will result in making disciples. It doesn’t and we don’t know why.

Often it’s the “tweaks” that make all the difference. But we can’t see it without input from another practitioner outside our situation.

The couple in Bosnia signed up to make disciples and plant a church. They established many relationships. Yet no one had come to faith and gone onto discipleship. The couple were disappointed.

Many of us are well connected in our communities, but we’re silent witnesses. There are people out there ready to learn more about Jesus, but we’ll never find them if we don’t ask. We need simple methods like Discovery Bible Study, sharing our story, sharing God’s story, praying for needs. Someone like Peter needs to train us and help get us started.

Peter will no doubt circle back with an email, a Skype call or another visit and find out how the new groups are going? He’ll want to know are people coming to faith in Christ? Are any groups reproducing? How will you help the groups form into churches? How can you train others to do what you are doing?

Get some basic training. Start reaching out. But don’t go the journey alone. Make sure you have other practitioners and mentors like Peter speaking into your life and ministry.