Five Reasons to Be Part of a Church Plant: A Letter to the Congregation

five reasons to be part of a church plant.jpg

Editor’s note: This October, China Partnership is praying for and sharing about church planting within China. Deciding to join a church plant is often emotional, as those who participate in a plant must commit to the hard work of establishing a new body, and also have to say good-bye to dear friends who will remain at the mother church. Today, we are sharing a letter to his congregation from the pastor of a mother church in a large Chinese city, urging parishioners to consider joining a new church plant.


Dear Brothers and Sisters,

During our recent congregational and prayer meetings, our elders and church planting pastors updated the church on the progress of our upcoming church plant. This fall, we are planning to plant a new church just 3 and a half miles away from our mother church. This brand-new church will be made up of some of the elders, pastors, and members from this church; but eventually, this new church will be completely independent of our church. We believe this is the mission entrusted to the church in the Bible: to multiply and expand the church in order to increase the number of people who have heard the gospel, to build up the body of Christ, and ultimately to exalt and glorify God’s name.

>
“Going to a new church expands the capacity of each of the churches to preach the gospel by participating in God’s gospel ministry and bringing more people to saving faith.

As I write this letter, our elders have already approved the new church’s budget. The pastor of the church plant has begun to invite brothers and sisters who will attend to join in planning meetings. If a member or a family at our church can cut ten minutes off their usual commute—by whatever means of transportation they use—by going to the new plant, we recommend that they should join the ministry of the church plant. Even if they are not ten minutes closer to the new plant, they are still encouraged to consider making the effort to join the new plant and “go and make disciples of all nations.”

Maybe you are close to the new site but don’t really want to go, or perhaps it does not make a big difference which church you attend, yet you are still hesitant to join the new church. Perhaps you are a part of the category we are encouraging to consider the new church, but have decided that since it is not mandatory, you would rather stay put. I want to share with you today five reasons why I encourage you to go to the new church, and explain to you why joining the new church is a godly decision.


Never miss a story

Sign up to receive our weekly email with our original articles.

First, this is submission to the gospel mission of our Lord and Savior to bring the gospel to as many people as possible. 

Due to space constraints, our church is not able to accommodate as many people investigating Christianity as we wish, much less to minister to seeker friends who live far from us. The limited space and number of our staff determines our limited capacity to respond to the mission of the gospel entrusted to us by God. We all have different ministry gifts, and not all of us are gifted in evangelism. Going to a new church expands the capacity of each of the churches to preach the gospel by participating in God’s gospel ministry and bringing more people to saving faith.

Second, the church plant is a ministry that manifests the glory of God. 

God has had a plan from before the beginning of the ages “so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might…be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.” Participating in the planting of a new church is adding to the city a body of Christ that manifests God’s glory. Therefore, church planting is a ministry that brings glory to God.

Third (and this is especially true for those who live close to the area of the new plant), participating in the church plant displays the attitude of a faithful steward, who makes good use of his gifts for the Lord, the Gift-Giver. 

>
“Shortening your physical distance from the church allows many of the good things that God has promised in the Bible to be put into practice.

1 Peter 4:10 says, “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.” We are not just talking about spiritual gifts here. We are also talking about money and income, shelter, jobs, relationships, and all the gifts that God has given you through his care. “It is required of stewards that they be found faithful.” Attending a church that proclaims the gospel, and serving this church close to you is a faithful stewardship of God’s care-giving gifts, and a way to live a God-centered life. This also gives other brothers and sisters in the church the opportunity to visit with you, disciple you, and even counsel you more easily when you are in spiritual crisis. Shortening your physical distance from the church allows many of the good things that God has promised in the Bible to be put into practice.

Fourth, involvement in the church plant is an opportunity for growth, sanctification, and for receiving pastoral care. 

Being involved in a church plant means you will have more opportunities for ministry, more opportunities to take on church responsibilities, and more opportunities to entertain and disciple other brothers and sisters. It will also be even easier to bring neighbors and friends to church after you share the gospel with them.

Fifth, this allows the pastors and elders of both churches to rejoice more in their teaching and pastoral care, rather than being unduly sorrowful. 

3 John 1:4 says, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” If one lives next to a church plant and is not willing to go to that new church, it makes it difficult for the elders of our mother church to persuade visitors who live next to the new church to attend the new church. It is also more difficult for the elders of the new church to persuade visitors to their church who live next to the mother church to go and attend the mother church. As stated above, distance makes serving the church, entertaining and counseling, and fostering good fellowship between members harder for individuals, as well as for the church.

There are more reasons than these to attend the newly planted church, but these five seem to me to be the most compelling and biblical. As pastor, I sincerely urge you to consider joining the church planting ministry. The physically closer you are to the planting area, the greater the spiritual and moral responsibility to join the church plant. I hope you will pray for this, and pray for the church.

Mother Church Pastor,

Fan Ming


Fan Ming is a pseudonym for a pastor in a large urban Chinese city. The church he pastors planted her first church in 2010; planted a second time in 2020; and is now preparing for her third plant in 2022.

 

FOR PRAYER AND REFLECTION

Pray for Chinese church members who are considering whether to devote themselves to the ministry and outreach of a new church plant.

Share This Story

Further Reading

yifei-wong-HfLKjg2ic64-unsplash
Nanjing: Bringing the Gospel Into Life
Read More
kenneth-yang-lJWJLkwIsng-unsplash(1)
Nanjing: A Welcoming City of Newcomers
Read More
lee-shuke-h3-ZEAAt_3s-unsplash
Nanjing: A Relational Gospel
Read More

LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN CHINA

With rising pressure and persecution in China, there are two challenges imperative for church leaders. The first challenge is for current leaders to love Christ above all else, and not to stray into legalism or love of the world. The second challenge is to raise up the next generation of leaders, who will humbly model Jesus even if current leaders are arrested.

WILL YOU JOIN US IN PRAYING FOR LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT IN CHINA? PRAY FOR:

  1. Current leaders to grow in their daily walks with Christ
  2. Current leaders to shepherd and raise up new leaders
  3. New leaders who love Christ and will model him to the world
  4. New leaders to love and care for the church

Videos

ABOUT LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT

About Shenyang

Shenyang is a city located in northeastern China and is the capital of Liaoning Province. It is known for its rich history and cultural heritage, including the Shenyang Imperial Palace, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Shenyang is also a hub for China’s heavy industry, with companies such as the China First Automobile Group and the Shenyang Aircraft Corporation having their headquarters in the city.

Videos

Stories from Shenyang

About Qingdao

Qingdao is a city located in eastern China and is famous for its beaches, beer, and seafood. The city is home to several landmarks, including the Zhanqiao Pier and the Badaguan Scenic Area. Qingdao is also a major port and has a thriving economy, with industries such as electronics, petrochemicals, and machinery.

Videos

Stories from Qingdao

About Xiamen

Xiamen is a city located in southeastern China and is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful coastal scenery, including Gulangyu Island, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The city is also a hub for China’s high-tech industry, with companies such as Huawei and ZTE having research and development centers in Xiamen.

Videos

Stories from Xiamen

About Chongqing

Chongqing is a city located in southwestern China and is a major economic center in the region. The city is known for its spicy cuisine, especially its hot pot dishes, and is also famous for the Three Gorges Dam, the world’s largest hydroelectric dam. Chongqing is also home to several historic sites, including the Dazu Rock Carvings, which are UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Videos

Stories from Chongqing

About Nanjing

Nanjing is a city located in eastern China and is the capital of Jiangsu Province. It is one of China’s ancient capitals and has a rich cultural history, including the Ming Xiaoling Mausoleum, the Nanjing City Wall, and the Confucius Temple. Nanjing is also a modern city with a thriving economy and is home to several universities, including Nanjing University and Southeast University.

Videos

Stories from Nanjing

About Changchun

Changchun is a city located in northeastern China and is the capital of Jilin Province. It is known for its rich cultural heritage and is home to several historical landmarks such as the Puppet Emperor’s Palace and the Jingyuetan National Forest Park. Changchun is also a hub for China’s automotive industry, with several major automobile manufacturers having their headquarters in the city.

Videos

Stories from Changchun

About Guangzhou

Guangzhou, also known as Canton, is a city located in southern China and is the capital of Guangdong Province. It is one of the country’s largest and most prosperous cities, serving as a major transportation and trading hub for the region. Guangzhou is renowned for its modern architecture, including the Canton Tower and the Guangzhou Opera House, as well as its Cantonese cuisine, which is famous for its variety and bold flavors. The city also has a rich history, with landmarks such as the Chen Clan Ancestral Hall, the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, and the Temple of the Six Banyan Trees. Additionally, Guangzhou hosts the annual Canton Fair, the largest trade fair in China.

Videos

Stories from Guangzhou

About Kunming

Kunming is a city located in southwest China and is the capital of Yunnan Province. Known as the “City of Eternal Spring” for its mild climate, Kunming is a popular tourist destination due to its natural beauty and cultural diversity. The city is home to several scenic spots, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Stone Forest, Dian Lake, and the Western Hills. Kunming is also famous for its unique cuisine, which features a mix of Han, Yi, and Bai ethnic flavors. The city has a rich cultural history, with ancient temples and shrines like the Yuantong Temple and the Golden Temple, and it’s also a hub for Yunnan’s ethnic minority cultures, such as the Yi and Bai peoples.

Videos

Stories from Kunming

About Shenzhen

Shenzhen is a city located in southeastern China and is one of the country’s fastest-growing metropolises. The city is renowned for its thriving tech industry, with companies such as Huawei, Tencent, and DJI having their headquarters in Shenzhen. The city also has a vibrant cultural scene, with numerous museums, art galleries, and parks. Shenzhen is also known for its modern architecture, such as the Ping An Finance Center and the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center. Despite its modernization, Shenzhen also has a rich history and cultural heritage, with landmarks such as the Dapeng Fortress and the Chiwan Tin Hau Temple.

Videos

Stories from Shenzhen

About Chengdu

Chengdu is a city located in the southwestern region of China, and the capital of Sichuan province. It has a population of over 18 million people, and it is famous for its spicy Sichuan cuisine, laid-back lifestyle, and its cute and cuddly residents – the giant pandas. Chengdu is home to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, where visitors can observe these adorable creatures in their natural habitat. The city also boasts a rich cultural heritage, with numerous temples, museums, and historical sites scattered throughout its boundaries. Chengdu is a city of contrasts, with ancient traditions coexisting alongside modern developments, making it an intriguing and fascinating destination for visitors to China. 

Videos

Stories from Chengdu

About Beijing

Beijing is the capital city of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of over 21 million people. The city has a rich history that spans over 3,000 years, and it has served as the capital of various dynasties throughout China’s history. Beijing is home to some of the most iconic landmarks in China, including the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the Temple of Heaven. The city is also a hub for political, cultural, and educational activities, with numerous universities and research institutions located within its boundaries. Beijing is renowned for its traditional architecture, rich cuisine, and vibrant cultural scene, making it a must-visit destination for travelers to China.

Videos

Stories from Beijing

About Shanghai

Shanghai is a vibrant and dynamic city located on the eastern coast of China. It is the largest city in China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of over 24 million people. Shanghai is a global financial hub and a major center for international trade, with a rich history and culture that spans over 1,000 years. The city is famous for its iconic skyline, which features towering skyscrapers such as the Oriental Pearl Tower and the Shanghai Tower. Shanghai is also home to a diverse culinary scene, world-class museums and art galleries, and numerous shopping districts. It is a city that is constantly evolving and reinventing itself, making it a fascinating destination for visitors from around the world.

Videos

Stories from Shanghai

give

A short message about partnering with us.