the gospel to every person,
every believer a full participant in the Great Commission.
The first part of our region's vision statement speaks of "A Church Planting Movement among all peoples..."
What is a church planting movement?
David Garrison, in his classic book "Church Planting Movements" defines a CPM as a "rapid multiplication of indigenous churches planting churches that sweeps through a people group or population segment..." There is a whole lot more to it than that, but this gives a general idea of what it is we are talking about.
In the book Garrison identifies ten common elements found in every CPM taking place around the world (it is my understanding there are some 40+ confirmed CPMs going on in the world today):
1-Extraordinary Prayer (we are talking about a lot of serious praying going on)
2-Abundant Evangelism (the idea of sow abundantly=reap abundantly; sow sparsely=reap sparsely)
3-Intentional Church Planting (not just evangelism, but planting new churches with the new converts, not trying to get them into existing churches)
4-Authority of God's Word (not only in doctrine, but in church practice)
5-Local Leadership (locals "call the shots" not so much the foreign missionaries)
6-Lay Leadership (not seminary trained professional pastors, but everyday lay people in leadership positions)
7-House Churches (no church buildings, instead many small home-based churches averaging 10-20 per house)
8-Churches Planting Churches (the idea of multiplying new groups rather than adding numbers to existing groups)
9-Rapid Reproduction (they multiply very quickly and in short time)
10-Healthy Churches (rapid reproduction in no way means lower quality, deficent teaching, or unhealthy church life)
In our case here in Ecuador we do not have a CPM--(yet!) While all ten elements can be found in our church planting efforts, we are weak in most of the areas that are crucial to seeing a CPM. I feel we are weakest in elements #1,3,8,9. Areas that we are making good progress would be 2,4,5,6,7,10. If I had to label what we are observing in Guayas province it would be an "emerging CPM". We are doing the right things, but not consistently enough to see a true CPM in our midst.
Our goal is to see 500,000 people come into the Kingdom in the next five years. Will you pray with us to this end? Thanks!