We want to discern with you God's call on your life.
We consider it an incredible gift when someone comes to us wanting to explore a life of ministry and possibly church planting. And we want to help to discern how and where God might be calling you to invest your life. Our desire is to help you determine the best fit for your life: international or domestic church planting, or becoming a senior pastor, site or campus pastor, or a staff pastor, or pursuing additional training, education or healing. Consider this an extended act of pastoral care.
We have developed a relational discernment process that takes place over the course of four conversations. Two of these conversations take place in the context of the local church, and two of these conversations take place with our national church planting team. While it might be tempting to rush this process, or skip certain parts, it is good to remember that discernment is a relational process where together we hear God’s voice and follow his lead.
Conversation 1: "Am I Called To Be A Church Planter?"
As a potential church planter, take some time to prayerfully read over these 10 Questions, continuing to ask God what he has for your life and ministry, and what ministry situation might be the best fit for you. Then we recommend getting together with a Vineyard pastor to have some honest conversations about your particular strengths and weaknesses, and where God might be inviting you to participate in ministry. Taking the time to listen for God's direction with the leaders he has placed in your life is a very healthy process.
Conversation 2: Online Church Planter Candidate Assessment
We ask planters to take an online assessment from Lifeway and begin working with their sending pastor to develop a path for growth. These assessments look at risk factors, spiritual gifts, spiritual formation, a 360° review, and overall church planting skill-set development. The results of these assessments are great material for a few months of leadership and coaching conversations.
Once the planter has taken these assessments, the Church Plant Process Coordinator (CPPC) for Multiply Vineyard will contact them and share the results of the assessment and ask for information regarding their sending church. Once this information has been received, the CPPC will share the results of the assessment with the sending pastor, along with a training video on how to review these reports with the planter candidate. Prior to moving forward, the planter must complete an application and the sending pastor must complete a recommendation form, which will be shared by the CPPC.
Conversation 3: Pastoral Assessment Interview
This conversation will be scheduled by Multiply Vineyard Staff with a representative of Multiply Vineyard; someone who has planted a church and is skilled at helping others assess their readiness to do the same. We will conduct an informal pastoral review, perhaps over a long dinner, discussing the twelve characteristics necessary for a church planter, accompanied by prayer ministry.
After this conversation, the pastoral interviewer will complete a short write up of the conversation and provide next steps for you. Multiply Vineyard will come alongside you and your sending pastor in determining the next steps.
Conversation 4: In-Depth Church Planting Evaluation
We encourage you to complete a full psychological assessment to help determine your readiness for church planting and highlight any pitfalls that might eventually cause ministry burn-out. This assessment will aid in identifying areas for development/preparation, and thus increase likelihood of personal and ministry goals being realized. Themes emphasized are those vital to ministry such as fiscal integrity, self-awareness, decision-making, leadership competencies, tolerance, approachability, conflict management, and risk-taking. The cost is $415/individual, $770/couple and includes assessment and feedback session.