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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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Large Launch

Those who launch large have a passion to 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.

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.

Fresh Expression/Evangelists

Those who start fresh expressions are passionate about evangelism and reaching those far from Jesus. This model is unique and should not be confused with a house church model that is ministers in tandem with the local church. Thier is freedom and permission given to Christian leaders to structure the new faith expressions however they feel led. These creative works can be defined in this way: Missional: Joining God’s mission by going to those not currently reached by a local church. Contextual: Grounded in the language and culture of a specific group of people in a particular place. Formational: Focused on evangelizing and discipling people in the way of Jesus. Ecclesial: Forming local, tangible Christian communities that may bloom into a future congregation. These creative projects are highly evangelistic and may reach people in just about any place you could imagine. For more information about how the GLR partners with Fresh Expressions, please reach out to us:

House/Micro Church

Those who start house and micro church plants have a passion for multiplying disciples and building community, not necessarily expanding an organization or increasing church programs. Their mantra is, “Less is more.” Expressions of the church can take place just about anywhere, but most of the time, these networks of churches meet in smaller gatherings. The goal of a micro/house church movement should be to rapidly multiply other micro/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.”

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