Teaching Students about Church Planting

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The Tates have served the Lord in Kitale, Kenya since January 2008. Their main ministry is church planting.

June 10, 2023

Greetings in the name of Jesus Christ,

One of the classes that I am teaching this term is Church Planting. Even though I spent fifteen years in Kitale doing church planting, I still hardly feel qualified to teach this course to new ministry students. It is such an important subject for my students to study and I can only pray that I teach them properly and to do everything I can to help them understand the importance of the subject and how they should be doing it. But what I’m teaching them has been a hard sell so far. Let me see if I can explain why.

My students are studying for ministry work. They are diligently studying the Bible and what it means to work in the ministry of Jesus Christ. They are good and godly students who want to know Jesus, want to know the Bible, and want to minister the gospel in the lives of people and in the world. But they usually also come with a certain mindset. I’ll call it a Traditional mindset. They come to Bible school, many of them want to become pastors. They are thinking of becoming pastors of already established churches, of preaching the Word of God and ministering in that church, of seeing that church grow bigger, and of eventually building a bigger church to accommodate this bigger congregation.

There is nothing wrong with the above model, is there? No, there isn’t. It is the same model that most of us are familiar with and, if we are pastors, it is the model we are probably participating in. So, no, there is nothing wrong with the Traditional model. But I am trying to teach these young Bible students something a little different. I am trying to convince them to consider a slightly different model. I don’t know what to call it, so I’ll just call it the Different model. In the Different model that I’m teaching them, I’m trying to convince them to go to a location where there is NO church already present, where there may not be any Christians at all, where the gospel needs to be preached, and where a new New Testament church is actually needed. My students can usually get on board with this pretty well, after all they are godly students wanting to fulfill the Great Commission of Jesus. Where they start jumping off the wagon, however, is when I begin to teach the really different part of the Different model. I am trying to teach them to start churches that will reproduce themselves and start other churches and to teach them principles on how to do that. They were on board at first because, while they do want to fulfill the Great Commission, they also want to start churches that will eventually become big, have lots of people and tithes, and be able to build big church buildings and have lots of structured programs. When I began telling them that church buildings are not always conducive to churches reproducing themselves because poor communities cannot reproduce such a thing, they began jumping off board. When I began telling them that when their church becomes big enough (defined as too big to meet in their house anymore) then the church should start convincing some of its members to start a new church in another location, even more jumped off board. After all, how can their church become big if they are always sending some of their members off to start a new church somewhere else? I think their biggest issue might be, “How can I ever get enough financial support from my church if my church membership is never more than 15-25 people?” The other issue they face is the issue we all face – the mindset that “Bigger is better.” They want to pastor a big church because “Bigger is better” for a thousand and one reasons. I want them to start churches that will start churches that will start churches so that the gospel will spread, the kingdom of Christ will spread, and there will be a church presence preaching the gospel in every place in Kenya and in every place in the world. It is a hard sell, even for godly, Jesus loving Bible students at Bible college. I can see some changes in them, though. They are beginning to ask themselves the question I ask them all the time, “What is your goal?” Is your goal a big church, with a big membership, a big offering plate, a big building, and a big reputation? There is nothing wrong with that goal, my beloved students. But consider another goal – a dozen churches, spreading out over the city, preaching the gospel and reaching the lost, all with the purpose of spreading the Kingdom and starting more churches that will all be doing the same thing.

“My beloved students – What is your goal?”

Blessings to all,
Roger, Julie & Chloe


Roger & Julie Tate
Moffat Bible College
P.O. Box 70
Kijabe, Kenya 00220

For ministry donations:
Pastor George Sledd, Treasurer of BFM
P.O. Box 471280 | Lake Monroe, FL 32747-1280
or click here to donate to BFM online.

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Missionary Update: Jud & Raquel Hatcher on Furlough from Brazil [September 2015]

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, Brazil. They are part of the "SeedFactory" church planting initiative, which is a movement to plant churches in all 26 Brazilian capitals. Since 2006, 43 churches have been started in 5 states.

Jud and Raquel Hatcher serve the Lord in Manaus, Brazil. They are part of the “SeedFactory” church planting initiative, which is a movement to plant churches in all 26 Brazilian capitals. Since 2006, 43 churches have been started in 5 states.

September 3, 2015

Dearest of friends,

I just want to start out by saying thank you. Thank you, Lord, for blessing our family and for blessing the families and churches that bless our family. A personal thank you to the following churches and their pastors that have blessed us since we arrived in the States:

  1. New Life Baptist Church – Pastor Steve Wainright
  2. Calvary Baptist Church – Pastor Jeff Hurst & Pr. David Mitchell
  3. Thompson Road Baptist Church – Pastor David Parks
  4. Center Point Church – Pastor Tim Parsons & Pr. Todd Thomas
  5. Addyston Baptist Church – Pastor David Pitman & the women’s ministry
  6. Concord Baptist Church – Pastor Jimmy Reagan
  7. Grace Baptist Church – Pastor Mike Pyles
  8. Buck Run Baptist Church – Pastor Hershael York
  9. Thomas Road Baptist Church – Pastors Jonathan Falwell, Matt Willmington & Dave Adams
  10. East Keys Baptist Church – Pastor Dan Hillard
  11. The Baptist Church at Andover – Pastor Eddie Schwarberg & Pr. Donovan Stewart

So much has happened during these last several weeks since we returned to the United States—it is unbelievable. For starters, the Lord provided us with a great car for a great price. We purchased a KIA Sedona 2009, in clean condition. Already we’ve driven over 5,000 miles in 6 weeks as we’ve traveled and visited family, friends and churches.

09 September 2015 JPH

Jud is currently assisting in teaching a Church Planting course for Pastoral Students with Dr. Matt Willmington.

09 September 2015 JPH2

A casual family picture of the Hatchers!

Secondly, the Lord opened up the door for me to serve at Liberty University’s School of Divinity as part of our stateside assignment (furlough) during this year. Several months back, while in Brazil, I contacted Dr. Dave Adams, who is the director of Pastoral Leadership program at Liberty University and requested to serve with him in any capacity that I might gain additional mentoring. (Dr. Adams was one of my professors at Lexington Baptist College along with Dr. Ed Overbey, Dr. Hershael York, Dr. David Hatcher, Dr. Larry Robbins, and others.) Through Adams’ leadership I was invited to assist in a non-remunerated role as Adjunct Faculty for Pastoral Leadership in the School of Divinity. Per agreement, my financial support continues through Baptist Faith Missions. I was also grateful for the response received from Bro. Dave Parks as he communicated with the directors of BFM concerning this matter. The Lord has opened many doors for additional mentoring and networking opportunities. I’m overwhelmed by the receptivity of the faculty and staff and overjoyed with gratitude with this one-year partnership. I’ve had the privilege of interacting with world-renowned faculty and leaders, including Jonathan Falwell, Drs. Ed Hindson, Elmer Towns, Troy Templeton, Jonathan Geukgeuzian, Scott Phillips, Chris Gnankan, Troy Matthews and others. I am currently under the mentorship of my dear friends Dr. Dave Adams and Dr. Matt Willmington—what a delight it is to see strategic leaders in action. I see this moment as additional training grounds for what lays ahead in Brazil when we return in July 2016.

Finally, the Lord has directed us every step of the way in our transition from Brazil to Lexington, KY, and then to Lynchburg, VA. We are currently renting a three-bedroom townhome in a quaint neighborhood with campus transportation to and from work. The kids are enrolled in a local public school and loving it. We look forward to connecting with you and at each opportunity.

Jud Hatcher

Judson Hatcher
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