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Best Practices of a Sending Church

Multiply encourages every church plant to secure an official sending church.

Jesus said to his Father, “As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world” (John 17:18).

Jesus told the disciples, “As the Father has sent me, I am sending you” (John 20:21).

Sending disciples to the unreached may not be a common activity among churches today. However, all throughout the Bible, this initiative-taking activity of sending servants to preach the Gospel is a common theme. God sent Adam and Eve out of the Garden after they sinned and he has been sending messengers ever since to rescue his people!

  • God sent Joseph to Pharaoh’s house to save his family (Gen. 45:5-8).
  • God sent David on a mission (1 Sam. 15:17).
  • God sent Isaiah to the brokenhearted, the captives, and those who mourn (Isa. 61:1-3).
  • God sent Jeremiah to stubborn Israel (Jer. 19:17; 26:12, 15).
  • Jesus sent out the twelve disciples (Matt. 10:5).
  • Jesus told us to ask the Lord of the harvest to send workers into his field (Luke 10:2).

Paul exhorted the church in Rome, “And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!’” (Rom. 10:15).

God sends church planters through the power of the Spirit and by the local church (Acts 13:1-3).

A sending church serves as the lead partner with a church plant. They serve in an encouraging and equipping role with a new church plant until it is self-funding, self-governing, and self-propagating. Twelve important practices will guide you in your effectiveness as a sending church.


Twelve Best Practices of a Sending Church

  1. Pray regularly in church services and staff meetings. Sending churches should lead out in the great work of praying for the church plant, the planter, and the planting team.
  2. Financially support the church plant as your primary local or national mission.
  3. Send the planter out with an official celebratory commissioning service. Provide prayer cards and direct the congregation on how to support their missionary.
  4. Serve on the Multiply Task Force to help guide the planter and to serve as the liaison between the church plant and the sending church.
  5. Make a long-term commitment until the plant is self-funding and self-governing (3-5 years).
  6. Share your pulpit with them to preach in your services and present the work.
  7. Bless the planter and spouse in generous ways that will nurture their marriage or family life.
  8. Invite the planter to strategic staff meetings, events, training opportunities, and retreats.
  9. Send teams from your church to assist the planter’s needs. This may include sending a few families to serve as loaned church members for the first twelve months.
  10. Enlist other financial partners for the church plant. Church planting is costly. It takes a coalition of churches to plant a new church. The sending church takes the lead role in helping the planter develop a team of supporting churches to join in this great work through prayer, participation, and specifically, financial support.
  11. Encourage indigenous expressions of the church. Support them as they do things differently than your church. It takes different approaches to reach different people.
  12. Communicate with the Task Force, Multiply, and the church planter’s coach in various ways that the planter may best be served.