Our mandate as disciples is to make disciples. Biblical discipleship only happens in the context of a local church. That’s why church planting is crucial!
Growing churches that are equipped to plant churches
We believe church planting is the natural next step for churches that are growing in maturity in Jesus Christ, where each believer is being equipped for ministry.
It's in this context that the whole body is 'growing up in Christ'. Our heart is to see local churches at centre of training and equipping everyday Christians. It's in this context of growth that new leaders are developed and prepared, that the next generation of church planters are equipped to lead and grow new churches.
How CCCNZ can help
CCCNZ can help support your church as you explore what a growing, equipping culture might look like in your context.
Support looks different for different churches, here are some ways we've walked alongside churches that are interested in planting and growing:
- Chatting with elders about how to grow a training culture in their church
- Connecting experienced church planters with people who are starting out
- Telling stories of how God has been at work through church planting
- Hosting regular church planting forums
- Hosting an annual Ministry Summit: with a track for church leaders.
Who's not here? A story of church planting in hard places
"As we looked around our churches, my friend Victor and I asked ourselves some simple questions: Who’s NOT here? Why are they not here? What can we do about it?
"We realised that the gospel never changes, the good news of Jesus is the same today as it has always been. But how we present the gospel, how we package it – that has to change.
"I realised that not everybody walks into church and feels comfortable. What we wear, what we say, the “Christian” words we use can leave people feeling left behind. The gospel is hard enough for newcomers to understand – we don’t need to make it any harder."
Rob Morton and his friend Victor Moore lead a church planting team in a more socially-deprived area of Hastings.
Victor Moore and Rob Morton
Victor works with at-risk youth who’ve been expelled from school and has a passion to reach the people that most churches aren't reaching – particularly the poor and those from difficult backgrounds – with the gospel. Victor is currently doing an apprenticeship with 'Church in Hard Places' - an international ministry aiming to plant churches among the poor.
"We've started with a small team of 11 adults and 13 kids to work together - ordinary Christians with jobs, families and lives outside of church. At this stage we meet weekly to train: we discuss Christian books, chat through issues like 'what is the gospel' and 'why is church important', talk about what we believe and learn more as we pray about our community," says Rob.
The church planting team is a group of ordinary Christians with jobs, families, and social lives outside of church, and they're thinking about how they can plant a church to reach, equip and empower their community with the gospel:
"Sometimes we think about how to reach 'hard people' with the gospel. But as a church we want to go even further - how can we raise up these people as Christian leaders?"
Keen to talk more? Scroll down for more info on how you can continue the conversation.
Who can we talk to?
Lui Ponifasio is Senior Pastor of LifeChurch Manurewa. Lui and his wife Ane have been involved in leading and developing churches in New Zealand, the Pacific, and further afield.
Lui brings a wealth of experience in ministering cross-culturally, pastoring diverse congregations, church planting, and evangelistic preaching and teaching. In Lui's role, he is helping to build and mobilise a team in the Auckland region, using his gifts to inspire and communicate across a diverse group of churches.
Rob Morton is the CCCNZ Training and Scholarships Coordinator. Rob has been involved in pastoral ministry for the last 10 years. He is passionate about training others for ministry and runs Practical Bible Training, church-based training courses for everyday Christians and leaders. Rob is currently training and co-leading a church planting team in Hastings.