Recruiting Tips for Church Planters

Ideas for recruiting for a church plant:

or as my friend Frank Abt phrased it“How do you go about recruiting for a church plant?” For an intro to this post see yesterday’s post.

church planting 21.    If you are going to try to start a church by gathering Christians to help you:
  • Pray that God will draw the workers you need to you and to your vision.
  • Talk about the vision God has given for the new church to everyone you can, everywhere you can.
  • Call people to come and help you change the world.
  • Call people from an ethnic diversity that will help you reflect the target community.
  • Don’t apologize for what you don’t have (a place, stuff, etc.) or can’t do (pay).
  • Consider calling people from other parts of the country to come and help you. Do it personally, not by letter.
  • Go big with your challenges. Don’t be afraid to ask people to get new jobs, sell homes, move, etc. Give the challenge; ask them to pray; and let God take care of the results. They may not come but their vision of the missio dei will grow.
  • Advertise in the community for un-connected Christians. Screen them well. You don’t need malcontents. But if they just haven’t found a church yet, gather them in and nurture them for the glory of Christ and the missio dei. Try message boards at coffee shops and anywhere you can find them.
  • Don’t take anyone from any church, “brick” or “organic” without talking to the pastoral leadership of the church they are leaving.
  • Talk to a mother church and ask for a hunting license to gather from the congregation the workers you want. Ask the mother church to release one its elders.
  • Ask to teach an elective Sunday school class at the mother church. Call it something like “How to grow a church from scratch.” As content, teach from the book of Acts and use it to explain your philosophy of ministry and approach to disciple making. It will give you a chance to surface some people in whom God is doing a work, answer the questions of those in the mother church who are wondering why the church is planting another church, and find some prayer warriors for the work.
  • For more ideas, find a mentor; every planter needs a mentor.
  • If you live in DE, IL, WI, IN, MD, OH, PA, NJ, SC or TN, contact me ( for one of my mentor groups.
church-planting-post-christian2.   If you are planting a church with a more missional focus whether “organic” or “brick:”
  • Pray for boldness to proclaim the gospel not just make friends.
  • Spend 60% of your ministry day in building relationships, serving the community and proclaiming the gospel.
  • Train everyone, (in English, the word “everyone” means “EVERYONE”) to proclaim the gospel.
  • Read and digest Bill Fay’s Share Jesus Without Fear. [I will write about Bill Fay’s five questions on Thursday.]
  • Use Bill Fay’s five questions to train everyone to move normal conversations toward the gospel verities comfortably and clearly.
  • Adopt an Intensely Local philosophy of ministry.
  • Train all new believers to tell their network of relationships of their conversion. (see third bullet point above).
  • Train them (the new believers) to share their testimony. (You will be amazed at how effective they are.)
  • As the church grows, (whether brick or organic) protect at least 20% of your time to continue your relational building and personal proclamation opportunities in the community.
  • Set up a time to meet with your mentor to pray for your boldness in proclaiming the gospel.
  • If you don’t have a mentor, contact me ( and I will try to find you one in your area through my network of contacts.

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