The Future in Church Planting Funding
Recently, I had the privilege of participating in a virtual gathering of church planting leaders from across the United States and Canada. We came together to consider the future of church planting in North America. Lots of great ideas and a few sobering realities were shared.
One reality is that we have to accelerate the pace of church planting here in the US. According to research conducted by the Send Institute, we need to net at least 1,900 news churches every year between now and 2050 just to break even with population growth. That doesn’t represent any gains for the church.
A common thread I found woven into many of the conversations was funding. I’m convinced we need to continue exploring more and different funding models. With church giving trends decreasing, we have to figure out how to plant more churches with less money.
One solution will be raising up more bi-vocational and co-vocational church planters. A “Bi-Vo” planter temporarily makes their living in the marketplace while concurrently leading the church for little or no salary. “Co-Vo” planters intend to stay in the marketplace indefinitely as their primary source of income.
Not everyone is cut out to be a Bi-Vo/Co-Vo planter, but we also don’t think God has called every planter to be. But some will be. This kind of planting allows you the freedom to plant without having to fundraise your salary.
Bi-Vo/Co-Vo church planting is certainly not new. It’s been around since the Apostle Paul supported himself as a tent-maker. It’s time to leave behind any stigma these models may have had in decades past. Then these brave church planters can answer God’s call to start new churches with fewer constraints, financially and emotionally.
Are you sensing a call to plant a church and while wondering what role your marketplace career might play? Or are you leading a church that’s enduring financial hardship and wondering how you’ll be able to support yourself? Let this month’s newsletter encourage you to explore ideas around Bi-Vo and Co-Vo ministry.
To learn more about bi-vocational/co-vocational ministry, check out these posts:
- Don’t Be Afraid of a Future with More Bivocational Ministers – By Jessica Brown Young
- What About Bi-vocational Ministry? – By John Koning of Acts 29
- 6 Side Gigs for Church Planters – By Chad Hall
- Six Possible Second Jobs for Revitalizers and Replanters – by Thom Rainer
-Patrick Bradley, Director of Operations
October 2020 – Contents
- Bi-Vo PlanterPlan Template
- The Coming Revolution in Church Economics
- Covocational Training
- Ephesiology Degree Program
Bi-Vo PlanterPlan Template
If you’re planning on planting a church while working another job, you may be worried about having enough time and energy to plant a healthy church. There are countless details that must be thought through and planned out in order to plant a growing, multiplying church. Since you won’t have time to waste, you’ll need make sure you allocate your time to what matters most.
That’s why we’ve developed a new template of our project management app PlanterPlan. For several years now, PlanterPlan has been helping church planters focus on the right things at the right time and in the right order. Now we’re excited to announce that we have a new template specifically designed for Bi-Vo planters. Our new Multiplication Checkpoints Template will guide you to start a church by multiplying small groups. Since you’re not constrained to launching a big gathering in 9 months or less, there are no due dates in this version. Instead, you reach critical checkpoints before moving on the other phases. Don’t waste your time on details now that don’t need to be done until later. Utilize this new template to ensure you’re investing the precious time you have into what matters most. Sign up for free today.
The Coming Revolution in Church Economics
Have you ever thought about planting a church that has a business connected to it to help cover ministry expenses? Is that even possible? It most certainly is, and Mark DeYmaz, who planted Mosaic Church in Little Rock, AR, would like to explain why you should consider doing this in his book The Coming Revolution In Church Economics.
Mark wrote this book before COVID-19 began to affect church attendance and offerings, so the insights he suggests in the book are even more relevant now than they were 8 months ago. Wondering what’s in the book? Here’s a podcast in which Mark gives an overview of the book, explains why he wrote the book, and offers some ideas on what churches can do to prepare for the coming economic revolution.
Have you considered being co-vocational while planting a church? Bi-Vo is temporary until the church can afford to pay you full time. Co-Vo planters intend to stay in the marketplace indefinitely. Again, it’s not for everyone. But lots of church planters have worked other jobs while planting churches; it allows them to meet people in their community and provide for their families. If you already have a marketplace career when you’re called to plant a church, being Co-Vo may not seem like such a daunting task. If you don’t, the thought of launching a new career at the same time as launching a new church probably seems crazy.
That’s why we’re excited to share that Maritime Christian College has developed a training program for co-vocational disciple makers and church planters. The college is now offering a certificate in co-vocational ministry to help. You’ll explore and develop new business models that will fund disciple-making ministries. If you have a knack for business and a heart for making disciples, see if this program could help you accelerate that.
Ephesiology Degree Program
One of the reasons we haven’t seen churches multiply in the United States is that we aren’t multiplying leaders to plant them. In order to multiply leaders, we need to offer leadership development opportunities that are available to more people. That’s why our friends at Ephesiology have developed an education opportunity that makes seminary training affordable and accessible to more people.
Their degree program equips students to effectively engage their culture with the skills and character needed to catalyze movements of disciples around the world all for a fraction of what a similar degree program costs at other seminaries.
This M.A. in Missiology of Movements is designed for those seeking academic and ministry preparation for work as church planters, missionaries, as well as cultural researchers. The robust nature of the degree may also serve as a stepping stone towards doctoral studies in related areas. To learn more visit: Ephesiology Masters Classes.