Parenting Field Guide for a New Service or Site when NOT Hiring a Planter


Step 1: Map your starting point

  • Build trust.
  • Gauge congregation readiness using values assessment.
  • Seek God’s direction and where God is already moving around you.

Step 2: Make the case to reproduce

  • Discover biblical, demographic, strategic and pragmatic reasons to reproduce.
  • Develop a case statement and prepare a winsome presentation.
  • Identify your likely reproduction model (site or service) and opportunity (target). 
  • Outline a simple draft or preliminary plan for your key leaders including readiness to launch indicators, sustainability factors, location, target and budget.   

Step 3: Build a lead team and engage the congregation

  • Secure the commitment of key leaders to move forward.
  • Form a lead team to champion the project with the wider church.
  • Engage the congregation in the vision with prayer. 
  • Connect with the area director for new church development for resources.

Step 4: Navigate hidden forces

  • Address leadership and congregational fears.
  • Address resistance to change.
  • Address leadership alignment factors.

Step 5: Build a sustainable funding plan

  • Develop a preliminary funding plan that will bring the ministry to sustainability in three to four years.
  • Develop a preliminary budget and define revenue sources. 
  • Consult with area director for new church development for help in this area if needed. 

Step 6: Begin to recruit and equip your team

  • Recruit key leadership early (worship leader, primary teacher).
  • Begin to recruit launch team with a goal of that team being at least 40% of your launch attendance goal one year after launch.    
  • Begin meeting with your team at least two times per month for equipping in evangelism and discipleship.
  • Start up small group format for meetings.  

Step 7: Engage your mission field

  • Release your team strategically into your mission field equipping them to discover receptive people, discover missional opportunity, develop contacts and add Kingdom value to their community.   
  • Begin to build contact data base for prayer with a goal of 1,000 before launching public worship.
  • Begin to discern where and how gathering may take place.
  • Begin to prepare launch preaching/discipleship series based on community needs and gospel impact. 

Step 8: Develop small group system

  • Begin to train leaders in simple reproducible small group systems.
  • Engage every launch team member in the small group system establishing it’s integral value to the ministry.
  • Equip and empower small group leaders to grow their groups.

Step 9: Prepare for public worship launch

  • Form the seven key launching teams. Identify leaders, tasks and begin team recruitment.
  • Develop multi-layer social media strategy. Website, Facebook, etc.
  • Develop three to five bridge events for larger groups.
  • Secure all support systems for launch (tech, set up etc.).
  • Hold two to four pre-view services whenever you reach 700 contacts. Build attendance each time by continuing to expand contacts. 
  • Refine launching theme.

Step 10: Launch

  • Identify a three to six week period as launch season.
  • Promote to your 1,000 contacts via email, Facebook etc.
  • Release marketing strategy with broad mailings/door hangers etc.
  • Engage five to seven touch follow up with visitors.  
  • Engage feedback loop for evaluation of every aspect of the ministry. 

For detailed help in starting a new service/site, you may want to enroll in the Multiply track. To do so, contact Cathy Townley, Gail Johnson, or Ben Ingebretson.

Gail Johnson, Congregational Development and Events Administrator

gail.johnson@minnesotaumc.org

(612) 230-6125

Ben Ingebretson, DK-MN Area Director of New Church Development

ben.ingebretson@dkmnareaumc.org

(616) 481-7566


Minnesota Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church

122 West Franklin Avenue, Suite 400 Minneapolis, MN 55404

info@minnesotaumc.org

(612) 870-0058