Tag Archives: church multiplication

Pastors Partner to Plant Urban Church, Reach Diverse Demographic

Josh Wagner (left); Keith Spencer (right).

By Carl Stagner

Two are better than one, especially when it comes to church planting. Perhaps nowhere is this more abundantly clear than at United City Church in Indianapolis, Indiana, where Josh Wagner and Keith Spencer share the pastoral responsibility. Yes, one pastor is white and one is black, and this is intentional—they’ve set out to be a diverse congregation; leadership must reflect the congregation they want to be. But it’s not a forced partnership. A common mission binds the dynamic duo, and they don’t just love each other with the love of Christ—they like each other! By learning each other’s strengths, passions, and gifts, they’ve discovered how to maximize their unusual but effective leadership for the glory of God and the betterment of their city. Continue reading

Multiplication in the Midwest Changing the Conversation on Church Planting

Tom Planck leading a CHOG conference at Exponential 2019.

By Carl Stagner

We’re simply not keeping up. Statistics show 4,000 churches are planted each year in the United States and 3,700 churches close. That leaves a gain of only three hundred churches. The overall population continues to rise, while the number of churches to reach people with the gospel lags behind. Perhaps now, more than ever, it’s time to change the conversation on church planting. That’s precisely what Tom Planck and Healthy Growing Churches are doing. The Church of God pastor and church planter is now actively pouring into the hearts of churches and regions to reverse a trend through basic math—multiplication. The numbers are starting to turn in their favor, as multiplication in the Midwest has captured fresh interest and mobilized existing churches like never before. Continue reading

Church Planting Made Easy?

Mark Bane (center) cares deeply about his TLC friends.

By Carl Stagner

If the title of this article doesn’t get your attention, perhaps Mark Bane’s life goal will: “to win as many people to Jesus as possible, then die!” Mark Bane has a lengthy résumé, with everything from youth pastor to “church planting master,” and perhaps that’s why he’s qualified to make such a bold assertion. Can church planting really be made easy? The director of evangelism and new church development for the USA/Canada region of the Church of the Nazarene will join us at Church of God Convention 2019 & General Assembly to explain. A provocative question like this begs for an answer, so, in a recent interview with Church of God Ministries, Mark Bane offers some hints. Continue reading

At the Crossroads: Indiana Churches Initiate Plan to Multiply

The crowded entryway of County Line’s new campus church.

By Carl Stagner

Nate Tatman had no idea how pivotal that moment would be. He’d been in the office of Indiana Ministries when something caught his attention. The map of the state on the wall wasn’t anything new; he remembered seeing it before. But what he hadn’t noticed was the distribution of push pins on the map, which indicated counties that did not have a Church of God congregation. In particular, he noticed this time that there were thirty-seven counties in total with no Church of God congregation. And that’s when things began to get interesting. Continue reading

More Than a Building: Arizona Church Celebrates Expansion

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Groundbreaking! All photos courtesy Green Light Photography.

By Carl Stagner

Lost in the middle of the desert, you’d be hard-pressed to find water. But at the edge of the Sonoran Desert in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona, you’ll find an oasis of hope where the Living Water is in full supply. For years, desert-dwellers have made their way to this oasis, quenching their spiritual thirst on the unconditional love Jesus, and telling others where they can find water. The road to a healthy, growing church has been dusty at times, but God has blessed every mile. Now McDowell Mountain Community Church faces a new kind of problem—a good kind of problem. They need more space! Continue reading

Multiplicación: Hispanic Council’s Church Planting Explosion

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By Carl Stagner

They’ve overseen the planting of more than one hundred new Spanish-language churches across the United States. In the past few months alone, they’ve planted eight new churches. Twenty years ago, the impact of the Hispanic Council of the Church of God (Concilio Hispano) only touched five states. But now, because of intentional church planting efforts, the Concilio gives God the glory for locations in thirty-eight states. Several factors have contributed to the success of the Concilio’s successful church multiplication efforts. A brief look at a few of these fruit-bearing plants offer some important insights. Continue reading

Keys to Establishing a Multigenerational Congregation: Part One

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By Sean G.L. Johnson

Josiah Avery watched the steam rise from his cup of coffee as he watched the symphony of city life in full swing from a window booth at Cavanaugh’s Café on Sutter Avenue. The pressures of leading a growing, one hundred-member congregation were much different than shepherding a flock of twenty. Five years ago, in this very booth, over a similar cup of coffee, Josiah had prayed for South Haven Church to grow. The new problem seemed more complex. How do you create opportunities for fellowship and growth while preserving the intimate relationships currently found at South Haven Church? What steps did he need to take? Pastor Josiah took a sip of steaming coffee and pressed the e-mail icon on his iPad. Up popped a blog post from Sean G.L. Johnson, associate pastor of Soul-Winning Church of God, with the subject line “Four Keys To Establishing Soul-Winning Church of God as a Multigenerational Congregation: Part One.” Continue reading