The Utah Church Multiplication Summit last Thursday was a very positive event. About 35 church planting leaders attended, representing about 15 different networks and denominations. We spent time getting acquainted, sharing our vision, successes, and challenges, talking about how God seems to be working in Utah, and praying together.
Representatives of four different church planting agencies came from out of state to participate in the conversation. These movements are seeking to increase their activity in Utah, who joined us out of a desire to learn from and cooperate with existing ministries.
It was evident that a great deal of experience and wisdom was concentrated in the room. The group grappled with issues like how to develop leaders for multiplication, how to enfold former Latter-day Saints into the church, the prospects for the house / organic church movement in Utah, how to analyze the receptivity of potential target communities, and possible structures for future cooperation.
The consensus of the group was that a similar event would be profitable twice a year. Instead of having everyone in one group, it would be beneficial to segregate participants into affinity groups, such as: reproducing church pastors; leaders of networks; church planters; multi-site; etc. A lot of discussion was also given to the possibility of jointly hosting a Boot Camp and/or a church planting conference, dealing specifically with local contextual concerns. The event sponsors – Mike Menning, Dave Nelson, and me – will meet soon to evaluate the event and begin plans for the next one.