Planting a new church?
IF YOU ARE A CHURCH PLANTER, we would love to enter a coaching relationship with you.
However, if you already have a coach or do not have funds for such, Epicenter Group invites you to be part of the free Network of Progressive Planters, a group of peers who hub around a new Facebook page. Cheri Holdridge is moderator.
AN INVITATION FROM CHERI:
Perhaps the trait I admire most in Jesus is that he was always pointing to God. He never took credit for much of anything himself. The other thing I love about Jesus is that he chose people that were living on the margins of society to be on his team. If he can use a tax collector (no one likes tax collectors!), and some uneducated fishermen to build a world changing movement, then maybe he can use the likes of you and me.
One of the things I have to confess as a Church planter is that sometimes I get a just a little bit arrogant. I think my church is so different from all the rest, that there are no models to learn from, and no coaches who really “get” what I am trying to do here in my context. “All the books are about planting the in suburbs with the beautiful people. What about the rest of us?”
The Network for Progressive Church Planters is for some of the “rest of us” who are trying to reach some of “the rest of them.” We are trying to reach the folks who won’t go to the mega church down the street, for whatever reason, and they won’t go to Old First Church. They would rather go to the coffee house on Sunday morning, or the dog park, or the grocery store, or just sleep in. Church is the last place they would think to go for help with their depression or their grief or their addiction because they think we “Church folks” are judgmental, hypocritical, and anti-gay, (according to a recent study by the Barna group).
I am passionate about planting churches for these people, the ones who still want to believe in God, and who want to change the world, but who have been left behind by the Church. I call myself a progressive Jesus follower. Maybe you call yourself progressive too. That may look different in your context than it does in mine; progressive is one thing in Kentucky, for example, and it’s something else in California. Here at Epicenter Group, we are interested in gathering a group of folks who are coloring outside the lines of established church patterns, people who are entering new terrain, and charting new courses in developing communities of Jesus-followers.
We want to follow Jesus, and create new communities for followers of Jesus. We recognize that we can’t do this alone. We have enough humility to know that we need a team. We need some colleagues, some coaches, and some shared wisdom. No one has all the answers. But together we can learn. Doing ministry in isolation in the 21st century will not work. Jesus didn’t try it, so why should we think we can?
There is no fee to join our Network. We are simply looking for progressive church planters of any denomination (or non-denom.) who want to engage in the free exchange of ideas. We have a private group on Facebook for those who are within the first 5 years of your plant. In time, we will host other groups, on-line forums, and occasions to meet face to face for learning. For now, if you would like more information, email or call me and we can connect.
With you on the Journey,