5 Helpful Steps for Planting a Church

1. Pray

We don’t have a five year plan to plant new churches. We don’t know where the next church planter will come from, or how God will provide a gathering place. We do know what God has called us to and we believe God will call leaders into the mission of planting new churches.

We will commit ourselves to be a prayer movement before we strive to be a church planting movement. We will pray for laborers, provision, vision and leading. We don’t want to simply try and execute a good idea, but we want to hear from heaven, be lead by the Spirit of God and join Him in His redemptive work!

2. Launch City Groups

City Groups are a critical component to church planting. By launching city groups in neighborhoods throughout Omaha, we are empowering lay leaders to live on mission in their local context. Many of these city groups will grow and multiply into new groups. These city groups are capable of growing into church planting core teams.

When planting Citylight Benson, we identified that we had a number of healthy, disciple making, missional city groups in a specific location. Those city group leaders were already investing deeply in their community and were eager to help bring a new local church to their community. City group multiplication precedes church planting. We must continue to launch, equip and coach city groups.

3. Develop Leaders

We are committed to raising up church planters and pastors. To do this, we offer three 2-3 year leadership development tracks: internship, residency, and church planting residency. These tracks allow future ministry leaders and church planters to experience our staff culture, engage in real ministry responsibilities, and get ongoing coaching, encouragement, and feedback.

4. Send Our Best

We are committed to sending our best. When we identify a church planter, we allow them to take anyone on our staff team, elder board or in our church. We are committed to sending our best, saying “Gospel Good Byes” and to being open handed. Church planters will not be sent out with JV teams but with some of our most committed, trained and proven people. We want to send church planters with a core team of 150-200 committed people.

5. Pay it Forward

Citylight received financial support from people, churches and our denomination. We now want to generously pay forward that grace and those financial resources. We believe existing church plants should be financial antonymous from the beginning, but we want to help send each church plant out with financial resources.