Billie Silvey
14 Principles
of Church Planting

These fourteen principles of church planting apply to most, if not all,
church plantings:

1.  Church planting is best when done in a network of people, not by
a single individual, or even by a single church.

2.  There’s a cost involved.  For the first 6-9 months, Satan’s
attacks cause pain.

3.  Church planters need coaches and mentors to help strengthen their
own relationship with God.

4.  Plant missional churches, which will in turn plant other churches,
creating a multiplying effect.

5.  Rise to the level of your incompetence.  That’s where God
steps in.

6.  Spend plenty of time in preparation--picking a mentor, working on
a practicum on how to plant a church, listing everything that can go
wrong and concluding that it doesn’t matter.

7.  Learn as much as possible about the area you’re planning to
serve.  Still, many things you expect to happen won’t; the
unexpected will.

8.  Adapt to the people you’re serving.  
Carpenter’s Church
in Lubbock, Texas, is a ministry to “modern-day lepers--the
unclean, the untouchable, the isolated, the dis-eased.â€�  When they
took the pews out of the building, they began to grow.  They use a
cow trough as a baptistry, and people sign it when they’re
There is no benevolence program, no children’s program, and the
church operates on a low budget.  They start by cleaning people up
physically, mentally, emotionally, and relationally with detox and
showers.  They didn’t take up a contribution until the people
asked to give, a clear contrast with churches that are always asking
for money.

9.  Coffee shop evangelism is effective in many areas for building
churches of the unchurched.  Learn to hang out with no agenda.  
Allow God to direct you.  Practice friendship evangelism.  Ask others
what they think, and don’t be too quick to tell them what you
think.  Talk about questions common to both churched and
unchurched, such as why bad things happen to good people.

10  Be patient.  Allow time to raise money.  The average time to self-
sufficiency is five years.  Learn to depend on God.

11.  Leave your ego at home.

12.  The three most important things you can do in a week are to
spend time with the people you’re reaching out to, spend time
with God, and spend time with your family.

13.  Break down ethnic barriers.  Care for the weak, children and the

14.  Prepare the soil.  Two-thirds of all garden life takes place below
the soil.

To learn more about church planting, attend the
2005 Urban Ministry
Conference Oct. 19-21 at the Highland St. Church of Christ in
Memphis, TN.
Church Planting
Paul, Church Planter
Church Planting
Paul, Church Planter
August 2005