New churches go through different seasons of growth, maturity, and development. Navigating these seasons are incredibly important for a church’s longevity and health. Most books and resources are about how to launch a church, not how to sustain, grow, and mature. In fact, very little is written about the seasons of church planting.
I. Seasons of Church Planting (each has its own challenges, trials, and changing dynamics)
In this phase, God calls a leader (or leaders) to begin a new church and begins to clarify the specifics of their vision. An initial core of people is gathered, a meeting location is secured, some ministries begin to form, and funding is acquired.
In this season, the church goes from being a concept to a reality, opens itself up to invite in the greater community, and focuses its attention on evangelism, growth, and implementation of new systems and leaders.
In this season, the attendance settles into a somewhat stabilized pattern, longer-range planning begins, new programs are added, and administrative structures grow to prepare for numerical growth and evolving vision.
In this season, church attendees begin rising up into positions of greater leadership, church government begins to form, and church attendance and financial giving begin to increase.
In this season, additional staff is added, the church gains confidence that it now has sufficient stability to exist indefinitely, church government and leadership are solidified, church attendance and giving become strong, and the church is now independent and able to self-govern and self-finance. It is also common for churches in this season to purchase their own facility.