Did you know that less than 5% of churches are ever part of starting a new church? That means that most churches never reproduce.
God designed the world so that living things reproduce, and we truly believe that the church is the Body of Christ – alive and well – so we ought to be reproducing!
No matter what size your church or how many resources you have available, we think you could be a part of helping reproduce churches!
Nothing about following Jesus was meant to be done alone. Neither should planting a church. In fact, it’s nearly impossible for one church to have everything they need to start a new church that grows into a vibrant, disciple-making community.
We want groups of 4-5 churches working together to send and support new church planting teams as they begin to cultivate disciple-making communities in new areas.
Here’s how we think this could be possible.
If you’re a UB senior pastor, you’re probably already connected to a Cluster (if not you should be!). This is the best place to start. You already have relationships established that could accelerate the new work as you work together.
If your Cluster is not ready to jump into the church planting game, we’d love to connect you with other churches who would be excited to work with you. Just email Andy Sikora.
Two assessments can help identify how ready you and your church are to help start a new church. One focuses on your church’s capacity to multiply. The other focuses on your ability to multiply leaders in your church.
Take the assessment to measure your personal multiplication leadership capacity
The 4 Rs to this communal effort of church planting are:
We are committed to working together to start new churches. That means that we’ll pray, plan, and prepare new planters together. Along the way we hope to experience growth in our own spiritual lives and ministry efforts, too. The true hope is that we’ll be friends on mission together!
The amount of resources available for new churches will vary from church to church, but we are committed to sharing a significant percentage of our resources to help establish new churches in new areas. This sharing of resources will go much further than just money. We want to make anything we have available if it’s helpful in getting these new churches off the ground. The sharing starts Day One so that we have something in the war chest when the time comes to plant that new church.
We are committed to reproducing leaders at every level. Most of our church planters will be raised up from within our churches, which means we need solid plans for developing people from new Christians all the way up to lead pastors and church planters. We believe in developing a good “farm system” instead of hoping a great “free agent” lands in our lap. As lead pastors, the reproducing starts with our discipleship of key leaders.
When we identify a potential church planter, we are committed to making space for them to join our team in a “learning” capacity. The best way for them to learn is to “do” with constant feedback and training in context. Our residencies can take place at one church or across many.
There are many ways to identify potential church planters, but the best way is to look at the leaders in your church and the way they are already growing. When a leader shows potential, invest as much as you can to see where things go. The ultimate goal is to plug them into an official “residency” so they get as much opportunity to learn and grow as possible.
Be sure to connect these potential planters to us (even if you’re not sure how much potential they have!) and we’ll walk through a quick assessment with them and start working with you to develop crucial learning plans that will best prepare them for church planting.
A new church costs a lot – and we’re not just talking about money.
One of the reasons we work together is so that we can share the burden of parenting a new church. As a Cluster, you’ll decide how you’re going to be committed to this new church planting team in support (financial, spiritual, relational, and more). It’s our hope that we’ll launch new churches the way families launch their kids as they grow up, with greater and greater independence growing over time.