Preparing to start a church plant can be a daunting task. There are so many needs to fill and sometimes the enormity of it all can feel paralyzing. One of the keys to successfully planting a church is to recruit a good launch team. (Remember, in our language today, a launch team and a core group are a little bit different. A core team is the team at the onset of the church who typically sticks around for the long term, contributing once the church has already been started. A launch team is developed before the church plant and in preparation for the core group.)
Below are four tips for recruiting launch team members for an upcoming church plant.
First, start by praying.
Where do you start? You start by praying. Pray for the upcoming church plant. Pray about it with close friends, other pastors, and other people you’ve connected with in your journey—perhaps those you’ve met through education (Bible college, seminary) if you’ve done that. God may guide others to join your launch team in the process of praying.
But more than anything, seek friends who will go to God with you as you seek direction. Establish a prayer team that helps you begin to pray for the development of your launch team and your core group.
Sit down and decide what you need. How will your staff team be funded? Will they raise support or work a job themselves? What about a worship leader? Typically, I think you should start a launch team with someone who will lead worship, someone who will help with assimilation and groups (I often put those together), someone who leads the children’s ministry, someone focused on evangelism, and someone to do finances.
Notice that some things that may develop later in the church are not essentials to start the church. For example, student ministry is likely not the first thing you need. However, in many cultural contexts, someone who works with children is a must.
Plan out what you need and start to plan how you will meet those needs.
Third, make the ask.
Once you have prayed and planned out what you need, you need to make the ask. This is where you are going to sit down with people and ask them to join. Don’t be afraid to ask. Be bold. You’re planning for a great cause.
The people you ask can be drawn from a lot of different places. Don’t be afraid to ask unchurched people. Of course, you don’t want unchurched people to lead Bible study, but they can play a critical role elsewhere. You can ask your friends and family or those you meet at community events. You can also ask those at the churches sending you out.
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SOURCE: Christianity Today, Ed Stetzer