Church multiplication is becoming more normal in The Wesleyan Church (TWC). All kinds of churches, big and small, urban and rural, are taking up the mantle of multiplying believers, leaders and churches. The motivation for this multiplication movement is clearly rooted in a deep passion to reach people who are not yet connected to Christ and the church.
In the last year, the Church Multiplication Collective (CMC) was formed in order to house TWC’s church planting systems and intentionally network Wesleyan leaders who are committed to discovering, developing and deploying workers to fulfil the Great Commission (Matthew 28: 16-20). With an ever-expanding culture of multiplication and an emphasis to empower healthy churches to multiply new faith communities, TWC is beginning to experience the early signs of movement.
Because of an all-hands-on-deck approach, we have made some significant progress within the church multiplication realm and our reproduction rate is on the rise. Here are a few elements that we can celebrate and highlight:
- The Wesleyan Church planted 30 autonomous new churches in 2018.
- Twenty-five Wesleyan leaders engaged in the Emerging Multipliers Cohort in partnership with Exponential, “growing community of leaders committed to accelerating the multiplication of healthy, reproducing faith communities.” This year-long cohort was designed to move church leaders toward a sending church mentality and help leaders build their blueprint for multiplication.
- Last year, over 420 Wesleyans rallied at Exponential East Conference in Orlando, Florida. These leaders engaged in multiple Wesleyan pre-conferences and were inspired to join the multiplication efforts in TWC.
- In addition to the Exponential Cohort, a new multiplication learning community was formed called the Wesleyan Multipliers. The first gathering was held this past fall at The Ransom Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
- Some of our movement’s best thought leaders came together and created a pre-launch training experience for church planters called Essentials. Essentials is being utilized around the country and helping church planters start strong.
- Our Church Planter Assessment Center (CPAC) regionalized, which means that there are eight more access points for future church planters to discern their calling.
- In addition to our three-day CPAC, we developed another assessment option for non-traditional church planters. This one-day Church Planter Wiring Assessment will be launched in 2019 and will also be available in Spanish.
- In partnership with OKWU’s Cross Training program, we created a two-year track to ordination for church planters called the Church Planter Incubator. All of the courses offered will be relevant to the church planter and will fulfill the academic requirements for ordination.
- Through a partnership with Gateway Leadership Initiative, in 2019, we will have a Wesleyan version of Cultivate Training. Cultivate is a nine-month online training, involving a coach and is best utilized during a Church Planter Residency experience.
- With the new surge of multiplying churches and church planter pipelines, there was a need to create a Church Planter Residency framework. The Church Multiplication Collective goal is to see 100 church planter residency host sites by 2024. Many of our Wesleyan universities are supporting this initiative.
- Every church planter requires a good church planting coach, so we’ve been building our coaching capacity through a new coach training online platform. One master coach and a total of 27 new church planter coaches have been trained to coach church planters.
- A new learning community was created called Multipliers Who Are Women. Currently, 52 women are gathering monthly for multiplication encouragement and equipping.
- Since church planting networks are on the rise, we created a six-week online course called How to Start a Church Planting Network. This course will be offered two times a year.
The Wesleyan Church truly celebrates every time a disciple makes a disciple and church multiplies itself until TWC has a transforming presence in every ZIP code.