Urban Cross-Cultural Church Planting Models

No two situations are the same. Each neighborhood, language, and church needs its own action plan. Each plan becomes its own model.

Several churches have followed somewhat similar patterns. The following criteria have been used to select and describe models that can be used as examples.

  1. There are actual churches that have examined by the author.
  2. They are successful in that growth and evangelism have taken place. It might be said that the model “worked.”
  3. These models do not seem to have geographic sectional overtones or to have successful because of their geographic location.
  4. Certain adaptations can be made to these models without loss of workability. All the characteristics may not fit a given situation, but the models can still be a usable plan.

These examples are not meant to be exhaustive, but illustrative. Other examples no doubt do exist. God given ingenuity will probably create more in the future.

I. Churches started at a physical distance from the sponsor.

A. Natural Birth – a church decides to plant an ethnic church in a neighborhood geographically removed from the planting church.

1. Characteristics

a. Both key laymen and pastoral leaders saw spiritual needs in a specific ethnic neighborhood that were not being met.
b. They were able to transfer this burden to others in the church.

c. It was impossible to bring the people to the sponsor’s neighborhood on a weekly basis.

1) It was physically too far to transport them.
2) The socio-economic differences would create a barrier.
3) The language would create a wall between the sponsoring church and the ethnic church.
d. The ethnic neighborhood has a few evangelical churches but none of the sponsor’s denomination.

e. Two ethnic families in the sponsoring church have retained their original language but adopted anglo culture.

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Reprinted with permission from Association of Nazarenes in Social Research.  Jerry L. Appleby

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