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How To Plant A Healthy Church

Author: Multiply Vineyard

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Planting churches is all about participating with what God is already doing. He is at work in every neighborhood and community around us. We want to help you learn to see what God is doing and expand your imagination for how you might partner with him. Join us for conversations with church planters, pastors, and leaders on discernment, preparation, and innovation.
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Dave Ferguson is an award-winning author, founding and lead pastor of Chicago’s Community Christian Church, a missional multi-site community considered one of the most influential churches in America. Dave is also the visionary for the international church-planting movement NewThing, president of the Exponential Conference, and will be joining us at the Mutliply Vineyard Summit on February 4thand 5th! Dave and his wife Sue have 3 kids and live in the Chicagoland area.   In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Dave and our host Michael Gatlin talk a lot about what it looks like to plant churches in a time of pandemic, and how our options change when we have a lens of opportunity vs. crisis. They also discuss Dave’s new book B.L.E.S.S. and the benefits of being with people for the purpose of blessing them and letting God do the work in their hearts.   Show notes: For more information on the Multiply Vineyard Summit, or to register, go to https://mvsummit.org Dave’s Website http://daveferguson.co B.L.E.S.S.: 5 Everyday Ways to Love Your Neighbor and Change the World by Dave Ferguson https://bless-book.org The Art of Neighboring: Building Genuine Relationships Right Outside Your Door by Jay Pathak and Dave Runyon https://amzn.to/2LlL7Kh Strange Rites: New Religions for a Godless World by Tara Isabella Burton https://amzn.to/35GWFyG  
Dr. Derwin L. Gray is the founding and lead pastor of Transformation Church, a multiethnic, multigenerational, mission-shaped community located in Indian Land, South Carolina. Derwin met his wife, Vicki, at Brigham Young University where he played for the BYU Cougars football team. They have been married since 1992 and have two children.  After graduating from BYU, Derwin played professional football in the NFL for five years with the Indianapolis Colts (1993-1997) and one year with the Carolina Panthers (1998). During that time, he and Vicki began their journey with Christ and experienced God’s faithfulness and direction as He moved their hearts to know Him and make Him known. Derwin went on to graduate magna cum laude from Southern Evangelical Seminary with a Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree and in 2015 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Southern Evangelical Seminary. In 2018, he received his Doctor of Ministry in the New Testament in Context at Northern Seminary.  In addition to his role at Transformation Church, Derwin teaches at conferences nationwide, and will be joining us at the Multiply Vineyard Summit in February! He is the author of Hero: Unleashing God’s Power in a Man’s Heart, Limitless Life: You Are More Than Your Past When God Holds Your Future, Crazy Grace for Crazy Times Bible Study, The High-Definition Leader, and The Good Life: What Jesus Teaches About Finding True Happiness.    In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Derwin and our host Michael Gatlin have an inspiring conversation about finding our identity in the Lord and leading from a place of groundedness in the gospel.  Derwin also shares concrete guidelines for building a healthy church and lays down some truth about current situations pastors might find themselves navigating regarding race, politics and generational divides. This episode is fast-paced and packed full of goodness that you’ll want to refer to in the coming year, so pull out a pen and get ready to learn!   Show notes: For more information on the Multiply Vineyard Summit, or to register, go to https://mvsummit.org The Good Life: What Jesus Teaches About Finding True Happiness by Dr. Derwin L. Gray https://amzn.to/2XfoWI3
Keri Ladouceur is the pastor of Community Christian Church in Naperville, IL, as well as the founder of New Ground Network. She has been coaching pastors, church leaders and non-profit leaders for over a decade and is the author of “Together as a Team: A Values-Based Approach to going Further, Faster – Together”. Keri and her husband Marc have two children, Leah and Liam. In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Keri and our host Michael Gatlin talk about reframing our disqualifiers as qualifiers, the impact of 2020 on the church and the opportunity it presents to be honest about what has been working and what’s not, and Keri shares an encouraging word about pressing into the presence of the Lord in the wilderness and not trying to skip through it. Keri also shares her own experiences with abusive leadership dynamics and provides invaluable insight into how church leaders might manage crisis in a healthy and honoring way.   Show notes: To register for the Multiply Vineyard Summit, go to mvsummit.org David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell https://amzn.to/37VOrUY Keri’s book: Together as a Team: A Values-Based Approach to going Further, Faster – Together https://amzn.to/3pylR1U Keri’s church: Community Christian Church https://communitychristian.org/naperville/ Tempered Resilience: How Leaders Are Formed in the Crucible of Change by Tod Bolsinger https://amzn.to/3rC8lMb The Gift of Imperfection by Brené Brown https://amzn.to/3aK2UFc
Jim Herrington has been a pastor for 45 years, as well as serving as a denominational executive and pastor to pastors since 1989 where he first began coaching leaders. He has worked with hundreds of congregations from a variety of traditions around the challenges of personal and congregational transformation. Jim is the co-founder of Faithwalking, and co-authored Leading Congregational Change: A Practical Guide to the Transformational Journey,  The Leader’s Journey: Accepting the Call to Personal and Congregational Transformation, and Learning Change: Congregational Transformation Fueled by Personal Renewal. Jim lives in Houston and has been married to his best friend, Betty, for 45 years. They have five children and four grandchildren. In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Jim and our host Michael Gatlin talk about church planting in a hyper-polarized culture and how the church can show up in a post-Christian world. Jim also shares some of his formative leadership stories, the importance of engaging in healthy community and expanding our capacity for emotional maturity. As a beautiful follow-up to last week’s conversation with Jim’s co-author Trisha Taylor, this episode will continue shaping our hearts and minds towards healthy, Jesus-centered leadership.   Show notes: To register for the Multiply Vineyard Summit, go to mvsummit.org The Leader's journey by Jim Herrington, Trisha Taylor and R. Robert Creech https://amzn.to/3nHDpI9 Faithwalking http://faithwalking.us Tempered Resilience by Tod Bolsinger https://amzn.to/3nHgj4i Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard https://amzn.to/34y1j1j The Spirit  of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard https://amzn.to/3h6j6Sn The Wisdom Pattern by Richard Rohr https://amzn.to/3mG6ylR A Failure of Nerve, Revised Edition by Edwin Friedman https://amzn.to/34vwo5x Jim's email Jim@theleadersjourney.us Looking for a coach/consultant? theleadersjourney.us
Trisha Taylor is a counselor, author, consultant and speaker based in Houston, TX. As a counselor she works with individuals, couples and families and seeks to provide a safe space where people who are hurting or confused can find God’s grace and wisdom. Trisha also co-authored the book “The Leader’s Journey: Accepting the Call to Personal and Congregational Transformation”, which challenges leaders to see their congregations as living systems and to respond to leadership challenges with emotional maturity, leading as Jesus did, from the inside out. In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Trisha and our host Michael Gatlin share a thorough discussion of the role of empathy in leading a church: Is all empathy beneficial? How do boundaries tie in? How can we partner with others in developing the kind of empathy that will truly serve the church? Trisha also shares tips on how to find a good coach to walk through ministry with, as well as several valuable resources for further learning. This conversation is chock-full of wisdom nuggets that will benefit even the most established of pastors. Show notes: The Ferment Podcast – Trisha Taylor https://bit.ly/2WfTw3C The Leader’s journey by Jim Herrington, Trisha Taylor and R. Robert Creech https://amzn.to/37kPL3a Edwin Friedman’s Theory of Differentiated Leadership Made Simple https://bit.ly/2KxxB5e A Failure of Nerve by Edwin Friedman https://amzn.to/2K7LYNY Generation to Generation: Family Process in Church and Synagogue by Edwin Friedman https://amzn.to/2IT8olx Leadership in Turbulent Times by Doris Kearns Goodwin https://amzn.to/3qUaqCW Faithwalking https://faithwalking.us
Corey Garris is a pastor with the Mile High Vineyard in Denver, CO and has been a member of the Multiply Vineyard team since 2014. He is passionate about seeing Jesus transform lives in his city and about MHV hubs being life-giving communities that profoundly impact their neighborhoods. Corey also provides pastoral care and leadership to the pastors of the Mile High Vineyard and works to connect with pastors in his community outside of the Vineyard. He and his wife Cyndia have been married since 2003 and have two daughters, Ava and Rylee. In this episode of the How To Plant A Healthy Church podcast, Corey shares his testimony of salvation and journey towards becoming a pastor, and the scripture the Lord spoke to him about the value of the local church and expanding the number of “wells” in his city. His story inspires faith in asking the Lord to lead us, guide us through setbacks and teach us how to love our communities well.   Show notes: Mile High Vineyard https://www.milehighvineyard.org The Navigators https://www.navigators.org
Jason and Betsy Patrick are co-pastors of the Streamwood Vineyard in Streamwood, IL, planted out of the Elgin Vineyard in 2019.  High school sweethearts, Jason and Betsy met in youth group, were married at 17 and now have six children through birth and adoption.    In this episode of the How to Plant a Healthy Church podcast, Jason and Betsy share about hearing the call to church plant and the emotional honesty, vulnerability and patience required in the discernment process. As champions of leaving the sending church well, Jason and Betsy are a wealth of helpful tips on how to navigate this transition with integrity. If church planting is something you feel stirring in your heart, grab a pen and notebook and settle in for a heavy dose of wisdom and encouragement! Streamwood Vineyard Church – Youtube https://bit.ly/2KVcvy4  
Dr. Thomas Campion is a Licensed Psychologist who specializes in providing counseling services across all ages as well as the family unit, and performs extensive intelligence, aptitude, psychological and vocational assessments. He is the President and CEO of Campion, Barrow and Associates, a psychological services organization founded by his father. He frequently consults with ministries and faith-based organizations and is the go-to guy for Multiply Vineyard in providing assessments and counseling for potential pastors and church planters as he is passionate about supporting and encouraging people in ministry. Dr. Campion and his family also attend the Urbana Vineyard in Illinois.   In this episode, Dr. Campion and our host Michael Gatlin discuss the difficulties pastors and people in ministry are facing during this unique season of pandemic, and the ways recognizing our emotional “lights on the dashboard” and learning to practice self-care can help ease stress and prevent burnout. This is a practical and refreshing episode that will be hugely beneficial in helping pastors navigate the changing landscape of 2020 both personally and vocationally.   Show notes: Campion, Barrow and Associates http://www.campionbarrow.com Strange Rites by Tara Isabella Burton https://amzn.to/3nOpv6L Conversation with Tom Campion & Phil Strout https://bit.ly/3l3cggO
In this season of quarantine and subsequent lockdown, we’ve discussed many tools and tactics. As we re-emerge into this new season post-lockdown churches and church planters are faced with even more new issues. This conversation with Amos and Alison Groenendyk is helpful in a number of ways. Their inspirational origin story as church planters in Michigan begins our conversation followed by their journey with the Chester Springs Vineyard taking over the church from the founding pastor. They done many creative things vitally connected to the mission of their church in this season of COVID-19 but there are many more things to be gleaned from their story,   
Following her recent interview with Adam Russell on The Ferment Podcast, Dr. Elizabeth Pierre stops by to chat with our co-hosts Michael Gatlin and Liz Moore about the necessity of taking care of ourselves through the trauma the whole world is facing in the era of COVID-19. This is particularly important for pastors and others in careers focused on helping others.    This is an important and very helpful conversation!
On this episode, return guest Jared Boyd provides a counter-intuitive posture for those seeking spiritual formation in a time of global pandemic. Knowing how and what to fight against begins only when we can move from thinking we are in isolation to embracing solitude.   This is very personal look into what God has been doing at Jared’s life as well as his local church, Franklinton Abbey, a contemplative faith community in a low-income neighborhood of Columbus, OH in this season. 
Pacific City Church was planted in 2018 by Chris Meekins and his team in Santa Monica, CA. In this episode Michael and co-host Liz Moore (also a church planter in Princeton, NJ) talk through the issues facing church planters in the era of COVID-19. Chris and his team have tackled these new challenges with lots of creativity. This episode is a look back at the last couple months as well as a look forward into the future of the church and church planting post-quarantine.
Vineyard of Harvest Church is a multi-generational, multi-lingual, and multi-cultural church in southeastern Los Angeles County in Southern California. Pastor Dennis Liu has recently transitioned into a co-lead pastor role with the founding pastor (and Dennis’s father-in-law) Kenneth Kwan. Vineyard of Harvest is an amazing church community on many fronts but in this season of COVID-19 they have faced an additional set of challenges. One of these challenges deals specifically with the anti-Asian racism that has come to the forefront in this time.    There is a lot to glean from this challenging episode!!
On this practical episode, Michael Gatlin and our co-host Liz Moore talk with Dave Runyon, co-author of “The Art of Neighboring”, an initiative that mobilizes churches toward building relationships with the people who live the closest to them. This episode is particularly relevant in this new landscape created by the COVID-19 pandemic.    So much helpful information in this episode!
The Elm City Vineyard in New Haven, CT is an urban, multi-ethnic, church that bridges across the socio-economic strata. This is a “behind-the-scenes” look at the early days of the planting of ECV. Baked in to their early DNA was the idea of ECV being a church community modeled after a teaching hospital where both failure was acceptable as a teaching tool and raising up new generations of leaders was the norm. This is an inspiring and very accessible conversation for everyone in the trenches of church planting or considering a plant.    Producer’s note: This interview was recorded before the COIVD-19 quarantine.
It’s been said that all ministry comes out of relationship. First between us and God and then between us and those around us. It is these relationships that help to form and shape us into who God has called us to be. The churches that we plant are also an extension of our personal relational health. Our host Michael Gatlin and licensed family counselor and lead pastor Kurt Attaway explore this helpful topic on today’s episode.    Producer’s note: This interview was recorded before the COIVD-19 quarantine. 
This is a fun episode! Last fall, our host Michael Gatlin was invited to speak at the annual White Out National Youth Conference in Colorado. This is a long standing and powerful event every February that draws youth together from the Mountain West and beyond. At first, Michael was reluctant to take the invitation but then he wondered what it would be like to invite a group of five high school students along with him to teach and minster together. What happened next is found in this inspiring episode.    For now, meet Noah, Mason, Mercy, Abby, and Anika along with Michael and Clint Considine, the Student Ministries Pastor at Duluth Vineyard.   You’re going to enjoy this episode!
In this time where churches are moving their services online en masse , Vineyard Fullerton took another approach using the video conferencing platform Zoom to not only handle their small group meetings but actually run their entire weekend service. Their innovative approach is described in detail by Melisa Keller, Event Director for Vineyard Worship and member of Vineyard Fullerton’s leadership team. Melisa has years of experience with the Zoom platform which enabled Vineyard Fullerton’s rapid adoption of this innovative approach to online church.  Lots to learn here for churches of all sizes and shapes!
Vineyard Columbus is a church with 8,000 people in attendance on a normal Sunday. Like the rest of us, with the restrictions brought on by COVID-19, Vineyard Columbus quickly pivoted from a church that only met physically to launching their online ministry platform in a matter of days. This is a look behind the scenes at what they have learned in this short time and a look at where they are heading next.  Another very relevant and helpful episode in this challenging time!   Andrew's bio: Andrew is the Lane Avenue Campus and Online Pastor for Vineyard Columbus in Westerville, Ohio. Andrew took a roundabout way to God. Growing up with a renowned Biblical scholar for a father, he grew up skeptical of the church. He met his wife Ginny at Columbus College of Art and Design and they both graduated with degrees in Fine Arts. Five years into their marriage, they both had powerful encounters with the peace, joy and purpose available through a relationship with Jesus. While developing a professional career in sales and non-profit management, Andrew completed the Vineyard Leadership Institute and led Hear the Cry, a non-profit organization responding to the AIDS crisis in Africa. He currently serves on the board of Riverview International Center, which focuses on empowering our international neighbors by providing opportunities to access services, resources, and education. After many years of lay leadership at Vineyard, Andrew launched Vineyard Columbus – Lane Avenue in 2011 as its pastor. He is finishing a Master’s of Divinity at Asbury Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. He and Ginny live in Clintonville with their three children. Andrew is passionate about good coffee, ice cream, vegetarian cooking, building things, and riding his scooter.
DO NOT MISS THIS EPISODE!!   This week’s guest is John Willison. John is the senior pastor of Abundant Grace International Fellowship in Shanghai, China. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, Abundant Grace International Fellowship has been innovating out of necessity taking their entire church life online from Sunday worship experience to small groups to daily devotionals to kids’ ministry. There is so much practical wisdom from their experience over the past nine weeks.    John’s bio: Born into a family of devoted church-goers, I’ve been active in Christ’s church all my life.  I’ve spent years in Methodist, Lutheran, Baptist, Presbyterian, and Anglican churches. Carol and I met at Northwestern University where I graduated in engineering. Yet, during this time, I learned my real passion is helping people follow Jesus. Mentored by a local pastor, I learned “normal” Christianity includes both orthodox theology and genuine spiritual experience. Carol & I graduated and married.   We both attended Trinity Evangelical Divinity School where I received Master of Divinity in 1988. A year later I was asked onto pastoral staff at our church in Evanston, Illinois. Our family grew to 5 children. Carol and I assumed our pattern of she being a schoolteacher and I a pastor.   As our children were approaching high school age Carol and I moved our family to Kenya. Why? We wanted our children to experience the world and Kingdom of God outside of the United States.  This shift opened my heart to larger picture of what God is doing in the world.  Over the years I had, for better and for worse, become focused on our particular denomination. Our first year in Africa restored my focus to the Kingdom of God as a whole. While in Kenya we connected with a group of families in Uganda who were forming Kampala International Church. Our values were aligned, and I accepted the call to be the team leader for the fledgling Kampala church. I was the first staff leader for this group. Together we articulated our vision and was able to focus what was a bit chaotic. Over the next 11 years we grew from a “one-projector” church of 70 people to a group of 700 spread across 3 congregations.   I enjoy building environments for people to flourish. I value scriptural theology and authentic spirituality. I am happiest when focusing on spiritual leadership, building healthy disciples and a healthy church culture. My wife and I have also grown immensely in appreciating the multiple cultures of this world. I have learned to enjoy the varying ways of communication – what people say, how they say it, what they don’t say; family dynamics; ways of resolving conflict, and the myriad other ways people build culture.  Much of it is very beautiful, most of it makes sense in context, and all of it must be brought into the Kingdom for our Father to sift, prune, redeem and bless. After 12 years in East Africa, our children grown, it was time to leave. As we prefer the international culture we did not return to USA. Carol accepted a post as a teacher at Concordia International School Shanghai. Currently I assist within the international congregations but hope to return soon to full-time work building the church.
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