THOUGHTS ABOUT CHURCH PLANTING

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The population of India is now somewhere over 1.3 billion people. Of this population only a small percentage (2% – 5%) are Christian. Therefore, it is important that the churches that are planted are not just gathering people who are already Christians. Instead churches are needed that are very active in sharing Jesus with those who don’t know Jesus.

Usually the longer a person has been a Christian, the more they struggle to lead people to Christ. New believers on the other hand have many non-christian friends, and are usually much more effective in reaching their friends and even family for Christ if they receive the proper training. Therefore it is most effective to adopt a church planting strategy that builds the church by making new disciples who also are trained to share their newfound faith with family and friends.

In order to plant many churches, it will be important to adopt a model of church planting that is not dependent on large amounts of funding (especially foreign funding). Church planters and pastors need to have a model of church planting that allows them to be bi-vocational.

Typically those who are sent out to plant churches are those who have a large amount of experience in the church and a number of years of training. Unfortunately, even with all the education and training, it is very unpredictable if they will be successful in planting a church of 50+ people.  On the other hand, many people with a much smaller amount of training and experience have been successful in starting and leading a gathering of 5-15 people.

Therefore it may be much more effective to focus on equipping people to start small gatherings that target making new disciples.  By multiplying these kinds of groups we can envision clusters of 5 or more of these kinds of groups to begin forming larger gatherings (starting with occasional meetings and then progressing to meeting more often).

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