Church planting remains high on Elim's agenda
Church planting remains high on Elim's agenda and a new team has been formed to spearhead more activity.
It’s been nearly seven years since Elim’s previous General Superintendent; John Glass launched The Big Centenary Ask (TBCA). You may remember the request for Elim churches to consider planting in the lead up to the one hundred year anniversary of our founding.
John’s successor, Chris Cartwright believes that we should continue and increase our commitment to this critical area of mission as we seek to re-evangelise the UK. To this end, REACH has recently put together a national church planting core team to facilitate this happening. The vision statement for the team is: 'Planting Disciple-Making Churches'.
This vision will be fleshed out in a variety of local, regional and national contexts. The team will be seeking to help entrepreneurial local churches to form fresh Christian communities as well as working with regional teams to identify towns and cities where together we can pioneer new churches.
Added to this, the team are looking to launch a bespoke training track for new planters which will thoroughly equip them to successfully launch and sustain a new work.
Introducing the Team
Each member carries a track record of planting successfully in recent years.
Damian Carr is the senior minister at Hope Church, Corby which he pioneered several years ago.
Darren Edwards leads Ignite Church, Lincoln. He specialises in urban evangelism.
Darren and Jackie Johnson founded King’s Church in Warrington and continue to release missional communities across the area.
Matt and Sally Timms started New Wave Church in Perranporth, Cornwall a few years ago specifically aiming to reach out to the surf community.
REACH Director, Gary Gibbs provides leadership to the team.
“TBCA has acted as a firm launch pad for us as we have increased the church planting momentum in the Elim movement,” said Gary. “However, I believe we need to have a strong and clear focus towards multiplying the number of new places where we are seeking to plant the Gospel.”
The REACH planting team believe that when it comes to commencing new works, there is more than one methodology to do this, but there are a number of principles which are key such as:
Birthing the new community through concerted prayer
Focusing on reaching unchurched people rather than collecting Christians
Having a clear disciple-making strategy in place
Planning for the next plant even while working on the present one.
“I read something recently which suggested that existing churches rarely think that they are big enough or stable enough to plant out. Most of us leaders have a tendency to be risk-averse when it comes to radical mission,” observed Gary.
“In family life, a couple often believe that they don’t have enough resources to risk bringing a baby into the world and yet when they do, it seems to work out the vast majority of the time – so it is with producing baby churches!”
Anyone within Elim with a passion and a sense of calling to plunge into the adventure of pioneering and breaking new ground for the Gospel should contact the REACH office for more information.