There is no lack of debate on the topic of church-planting models these days. The Launching large church-planting model could represent a paradigm shift for you. In fact, when you think about attracting a crowd and turning it into a church, you may have negative thoughts. But everywhere Jesus went, He attracted large crowds of people, and all were potential converts for His redemptive plan for their lives. He did not want His followers to lose sight of their purpose, and in Matthew 28:19-20, He gave them the Great Commission, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” We are called to do the same in this generation, and I have found that Launching Large is one of the most effective strategies to fulfill this Commission.
Launching large is not a new methodology but rather the rediscovery of a New Testament church for this generation of church planters. Acts 1 and 2 tells us that the first church went from twelve to 120 believers, then to over 3,000 believers practically overnight. Launching large offers an adaptable framework to guide you through launching and leading the healthy growing church God intended. It is focused on reaching the lost, has simple structures, follows a simple path to maturity and is reproducible no matter what city or culture you are called to reach. After working with thousands of church planters over the past decade, I have confirmed and discovered several truths about Launching large. Read More
The Journey Church in Murray, Kentucky was launched nine years ago this past September, using this approach. It now has three weekly worship gatherings--two on Sunday morning and one on Sunday night. It is also multisite with a second campus in the nearby town of Benton, Kentucky.
Launching large, however, is a resource-intensive approach to church planting. The Journey Church's founding pastor was able to use this approach because a group of existing churches provided him with the seed money to launch large and he had assembled the right-sized church planting team and targeted a large enough segment of the community's population to do so.
As Ron Sylvia points out, launching large is not for everyone. Some church planters are not going have the financial resources, people or community capacity to launch large. The important thing is to plant new churches and to not let our inability to adopt a particular approach discourage us from multiplying new churches.