Planting Daughter Churches in Ethnic Communities
Don Hanscom Sr.
Migrating people are painting a portrait of a new North America. USA Today recently reported that there are 354 languages spoken on a daily basis in America. Demographics Magazine stated, “America’s identity as a melting pot now extends beyond multiple races and cultures to also include numerous languages:’ North America is increasingly becoming multilingual. Demographics also reported that Americans who speak a language other than English at home grew 47 per-cent in the past decade, and this group now accounts for slightly less than one in five Americans. It also reported that in six metro areas, those who speak only English at home are in the minority.
I am convinced that what is happening in our world today is ordered of the Lord to give to this world the end-time revival predicted in God’s Word. The church should view this as an opportunity instead of a problem. This clearly may be God’s way of reaching the whole world with His saving gospel!
Crossing cultural and language lines to plant a daughter church has to be intentional, and not just an accident. Thank God for every daughter church that “just happened,” but it is now time for churches to do some intentional church planting within the many different ethnic communities of North America. Jesus said to his disciples, “I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest” (John 4:35). The ethnic field may seem intimidating and unattainable be-cause of language and cultural barriers, but we can do all things through Christ.
A minister friend considered himself semi-retired. He had pastored for many years and felt weary. Shortly after resigning from pastoring, he noticed many Hispanic people living in the area where he and his wife lived. He hired a businessman in his city who was bilingual, and paid him to interpret for him as he taught Bible studies in his living room. The Bible study turned into a congregation of precious Spanish-speaking Apostolics who now have their own church facility and their own Hispanic United Pentecostal Church pastor. This is what I mean by intentional church planting—simply finding a way!
Here are some suggestions which should help you in the endeavor of planting daughter churches within ethnic communities:
1. There are evangelism tools which can be purchased from the Home Missions Division in many different languages. Go to www.homemissionsdivision.com for more information.
2. Multicultural Ministries in the Home Missions Division stands ready to assist in every way possible.
3. Many districts now have their own Multicultural Ministries coordinator. These coordinators can help to organize a service to reach out to the community in your area by using existing re-sources available in the district.
4. There are regional and national Multicultural Ministries conferences and workshops for those interested.
5. Analyze the ethnic population in your area. Go to www.epodunk.com for demographics. Make note of stores and restaurants where you could post flyers.
6. Decide before you begin how you plan for this ministry to operate in your church. This does not mean that you cannot makes changes later, but you need to have a plan for yourself and your workers before you start.
7. These people are tired of dead religion and superstition. Although our services are different from what they are used to, they are looking for services that are exciting and alive. Don’t tone down your services for their sake.
8. Although this is basic, do not install a leader over this ministry who is not ready.
9. Maintain the same standards for these members as you do for your main congregation.
The most important argument for making daughter churches a high priority is that this is the most effective means for reaching unchurched people. There are hundreds of new daughter churches that already exist within the mind of God. Perhaps you have considered planting a daughter church within an ethnic community in the past, but years have slipped by and still there is n daughter church. When are you going to take the leap and do it? You cannot wail any longer. Now is the time! Determine to do so within the next year; make plans, and simply do it! It is God’s will.
This article “Planting Daughter Churches in Ethnic Communities” written by Don Hanscom Sr. is excerpted from Global Impact Magazine a Jan/Feb 08 edition.