Christian missions efforts have a rich history of creative and fruitful outreach across the world, and individuals and churches have an ocean of possibilities as they consider how to invest their resources. Why should church planting be an integral part of that mission? With so many good options, why choose to back church planters to establish new churches, especially in cities?
Here are 7 reasons to back church planters:
1. Church planting reaches new people
Numerous studies have shown that new churches are the most effective at connecting with new people with the good news about Jesus.
2. Church planting pays for itself
At Orchard Group, like many other organizations, we plant churches that are designed to reach financial sustainability within a few years.
3. Church planting invests in others
By its tenth anniversary, the average Orchard Group church plant has invested more outside of itself than it received to get started!
4. Church planting addresses growing populations
Many cities around the world (like Istanbul, for example) are growing by hundreds of people per day. Just to address the growing population, there must be many more churches.
5. Many churches are closing
For decades studies have shown that churches in many places are closing. In the US, for example, 4,000 churches close their doors every year.
6. Cities are under-churched
On average across the US, there is one church for every 500 residents. In places like New York City, Los Angeles, or Paris, the figure is closer to one church for every 2,500 people.
7. Church planting is "Plan A"
Jesus said, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations...” (Matt 28:19). After Jesus' followers received this commission, they set out to establish new churches across the world (see the book of Acts). In other words, since Christianity’s beginnings, church planting has been the principal method of outreach.