RePlanting has become a hot topic for denominations. With 65%-80% of churches in decline and many communities transitioning demographically, new visions and strategies must be developed to reach people with the Gospel and build healthy congregational life. Sometimes, churches can’t go on as they are to accomplish that purpose. RePlanting is a way to redeem the property, organization, and investments of previous generations for the vision of a church to reach a people and a place for Christ. Among Louisiana Baptists the need is great. Surveys of Associations have found that potentially 190 churches will close in the next 3-5 years. That’s more than 10% of our current congregations!
RePlant Ready Churches Needed
The Louisiana Baptists Missions and Ministry Team have partnered with now, 50 RePlants since 2010. Many of them have received funding through the Cooperative Program and Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering for Church Planting and Building Renovation efforts. Our need today is more healthy churches that will say “Yes!” to RePlanting and serve as a sponsor, mentor, or sending church to churches at or near closure.
What does it look like to be a RePlant Ready Church? As we’ve reviewed our current list of RePlant, we find some common denominators among the churches involved. Here are a few:
- A Passion for God and the Lost. Healthy church planting and replanting start with a desire to see people saved and obey Jesus’ Great Commission.
- Eyes Open to the Needs of the World. Churches that multiply are looking for opportunities to be a blessing and spread the love of Christ. They look at the world through the eyes of Christ, who saw the crowds and had compassion on them (Matthew 9:35).
- Growing through Healthy Systems that Produces New Disciples. RePlanting and multiplication is not a strategy to get your church growing. Multiplication is a way for churches that ARE healthy and growing to extend their healthy dna outward for the kingdom. Multiplication will reveal unhealth faster than anything. Get your systems healthy and multiplication will be the result.
- Unified through Relationships and Purpose. A recent RePlant that was the result of two congregations merging, testified of 100% unanimous vote by both congregations. This didn’t happen automatically. Great patience and clear communication by the leaders produced unity of relationships and purpose. Dealing with disunity is a must before embarking on a large multiplication effort like RePlanting.
- Discovers a Community or Communities in Need. With eyes open, churches that multiply see the needs of a community and in the case of RePlanting, a sister congregation in need, and seeks to respond.
- Ready to Send a Team of Leaders and Laborers. Churches that multiply well, prepare to send and give so that God’s kingdom can grow. Strategies and systems are in place to raise up leaders to go.
If your church is RePlant Ready or would like to assess your Readiness, let us know (Click here to fill out a form). We’d love to see your church take this multiplication journey. Contact one of our Church Planting Strategist for more information.
James Jenkins: email@example.com
Carlos Schmidt: firstname.lastname@example.org
Lane Corley: email@example.com
Lee Green, Multiplication Assistant – firstname.lastname@example.org
Office – 318.448.3402
Check out the resources at LouisianaBaptists.org/RePlantReady for more information and first steps for RePlanting in Louisiana.