We are committed to planting churches for several reasons: First, church planting is the means by which the Great Commission will be fulfilled. The Great Commission then is about more than evangelism; it is incorporation into a covenant community. The Great Commission is not making converts, it is about making disciples, and that can only happen in the context of community. The local church is God’s “plan-A” for the completion of the Great Commission.
Secondly, we need more churches in cities of influence. You might think there are churches on every corner, but consider that in 1900, there were 28 churches for every 10,000 Americans, whereas in 2004, there were only 11 for every 10,000. This weekend, only 17.5% of Americans will attend church. Just to keep pace with population growth, we need to increase the rate at which we are planting churches tenfold!
Finally, we believe the best way to benefit existing churches is to plant new churches. New churches reach people that existing churches otherwise would not, and they help raise the spiritual climate of the entire city. When the water in the harbor rises, all the boats rise. We have certainly seen that to be true in Raleigh-Durham.
We are excited to be sending our next church plant to Greensboro, NC. We praise God knowing there are many strong churches in the region already, but we also know that there are many people in Greensboro who will never hear the gospel outside of new churches being planted. Greensboro is a very strategic place, and we are praying for not just a new church there, but a church planting movement.
When it comes to church planting, you know as well as I that there are no sure wins. But I want you to know that I believe the combination of Andrew Hopper, the team he is assembling, and their destination is lining up to be as close to a sure bet as anything I have seen. Andrew has been a member of our staff, mentee, and friend of mine for the last 4 years. We believe in sending our best and that is certainly the case here. I believe this will be a win for the Kingdom, The Summit, and could be for your church as well.
I want to invite you to partner with us in this endeavor. Frankly, we won’t be able to do this alone. We would love to partner with you in this, and have you as a part-owner of this exciting new venture.
Senior Pastor of the Summit Church