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Benefits of Being a Mother Church

Church PlantingAs I was looking through J.D. Payne’s book Discovering Church Planting: An Introduction to the Whats, Whys, and Hows of Global Church Planting I came across a sidebar which lists “some benefits of being a mother church.” Though this is by no means an exhaustive list, it does draw out some important benefits of being a church dedicated to planting. This topic is close to my heart these days as my church prepares to send out some of our members to plant a new church on the east side of Toronto.

Here is the list:

At least thirteen things (the “lucky thirteen”) happen within sponsoring churches when those churches become actively involved in planting new churches.

  1. Sponsoring keeps the church fresh and alive to its mission and vision and challenges the church’s faith.
  2. Sponsoring reminds the church of the challenge to pray for the lost.
  3. Sponsoring enables the church to welcome other people into the kingdom that it would not otherwise have assimilated.
  4. Sponsoring creates a climate open to birthing a variety of need-meeting groups within the sending church.
  5. Sponsoring provides evangelistic vitality and activity.
  6. Sponsoring encourages the discovery and development of new and latent leaders.
  7. Sponsoring encourages coaching, mentoring, and apprenticeship in ministry while providing a renewed understanding of how we are all part of a team effort.
  8. Sponsoring provides an occasion for church members to get to know missionaries personally.
  9. Sponsoring builds on the past and insures the future.
  10. Sponsoring minimizes the tendency toward a self-centered ministry.
  11. Sponsoring provides an education in missions and serves as a stimulus for young people’s dedication to Christian service.
  12. Sponsoring provides a visible proof that God is still working through people and that some are responding to his commission to go out and evangelize.
  13. Sponsoring provides a new opportunity for personal involvement in missions.

The list is taken from Spin-off Churches: How One Church Successfully Plants Another by Harrison, Cheyney and Overstreet. I haven’t read the book, so can’t comment on whether it’s worth the purchase.