250 New Congregations in 5 years

United Church of Christ Local Church Ministries' board of directors have endorsed planting and welcoming 250 new churches into the UCC by 2011 and as many as 1,600 new congregations by 2021. The new churches are expected to come from brand-new congregations and existing congregations become affiliated with the UCC.

The plan is part of a new Evangelism report called "Now is the Kairos Time." I haven't been able to find an online version of it yet. But the report in the United Church News says that "Kairos" has a four-fold strategy:
  1. nurturing a church culture that embraces and engages in new church development
  2. creating systems that recognize, recruit, assess, train and coach new church planters
  3. encouraging and empowering congregational multiplication [churches starting churches]
  4. preparing for increased outreach and welcome of affiliating [already-existing] congregations
I think it's a pretty impressive goal -- in a direction we really need in the UCC. It's high time we had a workable plan for planting and nurturing new congregations.
My first reaction is a faster heartbeat. I'm looking forward to the next 5 years.

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