Why Multi-Site is a Strategy For The Point
Why is The Point considering a multi-site strategy for Frankfort and Central Kentucky (CKY) ? Is this really the best way to grow a healthy church?
WHAT IS OUR ULTIMATE OBJECTIVE?
Our ultimate objective is to reach people and grow a healthy church. It is not to build the biggest church in town or be a mega-church. Nor is it to get to what we think is an ideal size and then stop growing by being content with reaching ‘enough’ people. It is to ask the honest question, “How can we get the most people in this area following Christ and into a healthy church?”
Church, after all, has nothing to do with a physical locale or a building structure. The church is a body of people. And that body of people should be willing to do whatever it takes, and meet wherever it needs to, to most effectively spread God’s glory to their community.
WHY IS MULTI-SITE THE BEST WAY FOR THE POINT COMMUNITY CHURCH TO DO THAT?
Multi-site allows us to take the location of one of our most effective outreaches, our Sunday morning service, closer to where people live. Studies have shown that, by FAR this is more effective than having one big building for everyone, everywhere to come to.
It also allows us to keep weekly ministries closer to people. Children’s ministries, high school ministries, community group–all these things are done best in local community. Ecclesiastes says “Better is a neighbor nearby than a brother far away.” We can be better brothers to our community and each other when we are organized locally.
It is also much more cost and time efficient. The multi-site approach is a far better stewardship strategy than building larger and larger buildings on one site.
It allows us to be flexible for ministry in the future. If God really blesses our church in the future and we have 1,500 people coming (a very real dream, I believe!). Community and Fellowship is far more efficient at a campus of 750 than 3000. Multi-site makes us flexible.
WHY NOT JUST PLANT A COMPLETELY INDEPENDENT CHURCH?
90% of church plants of this type fail and 90% multi-site campuses succeed. If that is the case, why shouldn’t we start multiple sites in CKY? We want to reach as many people as we can as quickly as we can?
I will add that if a new campus starts and we perceive that the congregation would be more effective at reaching people as an independent church, then we will most definitely turn it loose! The bottom line is reaching people. We must evaluate carefully each situation to determine what is the most effective way to reach people in a particular city.
WHAT WILL THE LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE BE LIKE? WILL THERE BE MULTIPLE PREACHERS? WILL THERE BE ONE LEAD PASTOR?
I think the question comes from the idea that people feel like they “know” the ‘senior’ pastor. But that is impossible for everyone in any church over 100. I gave up trying to know everyone in our church a long time ago. That’s why we have MULTIPLE pastors and elders. And there will be elders and pastors at each campus. The local pastors and elders will be able to know those people more.
Church community is built not by shaking the preacher’s hand, but primarily by being committed to living in community within a small group of church members and by pastoral care by the local ministry team on campus.
The Point Community Church, if God gives us multiple campuses across CKY, will have:
ONE elder body, divided into specific elder responsibilities; and campus-specific elders for each site. The campus pastor is also the primary preaching pastor for that site. The sites will be governed by the body of Elders.
IS THIS THE BEST WAY TO GROW A CHURCH? DON’T YOU AUTOMATICALLY LOSE “COMMUNITY” AND ATTRACT ONLY “CONSUMERS?”
Churches don’t grow when they don’t reach people. Churches that reach people will grow. Healthy things grow. If your plant is not growing, it’s dead.
We believe you CAN grow large and build a community at the same time, if you value both things, as we do. In Acts 2, the church grows by 3000 in one day and then adds to that number daily. All the while they are growing in community and love for each other.
Jesus often attracted a huge crowd at first (see, for example, John 6 with the feeding of the 5000). Out of that crowd he drew committed disciples and brought them into community.
Frankly, many people that criticize the large, growing churches are people who aren’t reaching others and are in churches not reaching others. It’s a self-righteous way of disguising their own laziness and ineffectiveness. Before we will listen to someone’s critique of our way of reaching people, we will want see their more effective way of doing so. D. L. Moody said to the man who complained to him that he did not like Moody’s way of reaching people: “I don’t particularly like my way of doing it, either. But I certainly like my way of doing it better than your way of NOT doing it.”
Planting a regional campus is a proven strategy of reaching people and it does so with urgency. If we believe in what we are doing at The Point in Frankfort, then why not do it in other CKY cities?
The bottom line is reaching people and growing healthy churches.
WHY DOESN’T THE POINT JUST SAY ITS FULL AND SEND PEOPLE TO OTHER CHURCHES?
We are counting on other churches to prosper as well. Consider this… Central Kentucky is 1.5 million people currently. So, if our church grew by 15,000 next year, we would only have reached 1% of CKY.
So, it will take lots of other churches to reach this area–for every 1 we reach 6 more will have moved into our area! We will continue to work with other churches, support them and pray for them, and plead with God to sweep through CKY, knowing that when the water in the harbor rises, all the boats rise with it.
But make no mistake, we WILL act in some ways as if we are the only church in CKY because we’re not going to assume that anybody else is going to reach those people. The problem is that nobody is reaching many of these people. We are going to try. And if all the churches would begin to operate this way, we just might actually get the job done, by God’s grace. We are ever mindful that Jesus said that He will build His church.
It is our belief that this is the best way to accomplish our two objectives: to reach as many people as possible as fast as possible and to grow biblical, healthy, Gospel-centered churches. We believe in God’s incredible intentions for CKY. We measure His love for the Bluegrass by the cross and His power to do something here by the Resurrection. We are going to, by His grace, take the gospel to every community in our region.