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Churches Planting Churches supplants City on a Hill


December 10, 2002
By Daniel Rempel
Winnipeg, Man.—In Canada, City on a Hill is being replaced with Churches Planting Churches.

While the program will continue to provide denominational funds for church/ministry planting initiatives, “There’s a major shift in the program,” said Jean-Jacques Goulet, director for Outreach and Church Planting for Mennonite Church Canada Witness.

Instead of groups of congregations, grants will be made to individual congregations or area conferences wanting to plant churches. Funding is no longer intended for urban areas only, but the focus is now exclusively church planting and not on urban ministries as well.

“The most effective tool for reaching out into communities is planting a new church,” said Goulet, adding that he hopes more churches will consider it. Outreach opportunities may be overlooked as “Some of our churches have been starting building projects to deal with growing membership, rather than starting a new church.”

“Sometimes our way of planting new churches has been out of dissent; however, it is always better when the mother church can bless the new vision that’s developing,’ said Goulet.

“The most successful churches planted are the ones planted by churches,” added Goulet.

“We know that planting a church is expensive for a congregation, there’s typically a loss of money in the first three years. We’re there to help for those three very big years.” Grants will be made in close consultation with area conferences.

Continuing from City on a Hill is the vision that congregations planted with the program’s assistance be self-reproducing missional peace churches.