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Uk News

Surveying infertile soil

There has been a proliferation of church planting in recent years amongst many and varied streams of the evangelical church, both in the UK and around the world. Much of the time that can certainly be seen as a very positive and exciting thing. However, along with the advances and successes there are also many struggling plants and, sadly, a good number which have failed despite initial high hopes.


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A new study based in the UK, but engaging with a broad range of pastors and networks from all over the world, is seeking to listen to, and learn from, the stories of plants that have not gone as ‘hoped or expected’. Perhaps a plant has ended up having to shut down, or is just limping along, or maybe, after an extended period of significant struggle, is now thriving. The hope is that as these examples are considered, healthier churches will be planted with pastors being better equipped and, along with sending churches, having more realistic expectations of the process. Part of the research also seeks to understand how planters who have struggled have been cared for during what is often a very painful process.