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Starting new churches is an adventure, so don’t go it alone. The Great Lakes Region of The Wesleyan Church helps connect you to resources and relationships that will turn Church Multiplication into a life-giving experience.

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There’s More Than One Way To Start A Church

We are committed to helping you connect to resources and relationships that fit the model best resonating with your ministry philosophy. Below are six different startup models for you to explore.

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Evangelism-Focused Small Group

Those who start small and grow rapidly through evangelism have a passion to build organic multiplication through witness to Christ. This model begins as a small group intentionally focused on relational evangelism with an intent to grow into a more sizeable congregation. The group may start with a few families around a Bible study, but the goal is to grow the group, through relational evangelism efforts, to the point where additional programming, ministries, and facilities are required.

Large Launch

Those who launch large have a passion for gather as many people as possible right from the start to begin reaching as many as possible in larger venues. This model typically begins with a church planter that spends nine months to a year recruiting a launch team and developing the infrastructure of a full-service church. The goal is to build up to a grand opening or launch day where the church begins to offer public worship gatherings, with an expectation that a couple hundred people will find themselves involved in the new church within the first year.


Those who start missional and incarnational churches are passionate about becoming a part of the ebb and flow of the community, serving and loving the community, and establishing relationships with the people of the community. Missional and incarnational church plants may have people “belong” to the faith community before they “become” a follower of Christ as they serve the community and serve together. The goal is to disciple themselves into being a church.

Simple/House Church

Those who start simple and house church plants have a passion to multiply disciples and build community, not necessarily expanding an organization or increasing church programs. Their mantra is, “Less is more.” Simple expressions of church can take place just about anywhere, but most of the time these churches meet in someone’s house. The goal of a simple/house church movement should be to rapidly multiply other simple/house churches.


Those who start multisite and campus congregations have a passion to reach more zip codes for Christ by expanding the reach and building on the resources and model and name of an existing church. This model typically incorporates the startup dynamics of the large launch or missional/incarnational model; however, the new work is not an autonomous church (although there might be a plan in place for it to eventually become autonomous). Typically, the new site or campus shares the same mission, name, vision, values, strategy, budget, and governing structure of the parent church. The motto of the multisite church is, “One church in multiple locations.”

Fresh Expression/Microchurch

Those who start fresh expressions and microchurches have a passion to do life together outside of the brick and mortar structure of existing church life. This model is also differentiated from the simple/house church model in that it is connected to a larger parent church of some kind. Because of this there are some comparisons to multisite/campus development; albeit, there is much more freedom given to the leaders to structure the new faith community however they feel led. The fresh expression / micro church is initially under the governance of a parent church. In time, if the new work requires higher levels of ecclesial structure, the leaders are free to turn it into an autonomous church. These creative projects are highly evangelistic and can meet in restaurants, bars, coffee shops, schools, athletic buildings, libraries, hospitals, ski lodges, prisons, dog parks, workplaces or just about any place you could imagine.

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Image by Tyler Franta


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