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Page 4 Volume 7, Issue 1 The Wisdom of Supporting a Church Planter by Dr. Jim Townsley, Central Baptist Church, Southington Connecticut The work of missions is planting churches. Whether a man starts a church in America or overseas, the goal is the same: start local New Testament Baptist churches. Missions should begin at the local church and spread to the neighboring communities, throughout the state, then all of America, and finally all the world to the regions beyond. This we are to do all at the same time and not one without the other. The book of Acts is clear as to where we are to start churches. Acts 1:8: But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. It is important for preachers to recognize the need to start churches in America. Half of America's population is in our cities and most people recognize that our cities have been abandoned by our churches. Every major city in America is largely unevangelized. In addition the Northeast region of America has approximately one fourth of the United States population and yet it has the least amount of churches. The West Coast and the Northwest all have many needy areas. There are also many pockets of population that need the Gospel. The golden horseshoe of Canada has a dense population, but it is in desperate need of churches. Unfortunately, some have forgotten our mission field closest to us right here in North America. Starting churches in needy cities of America has certain unique benefits. First of all, USA church plants have a short duration. On average a new church start is supported for about four years. Some may take longer and some may require less time, but on average four years is how long new churches need support. After four years the church can change their support to give it to another new church plant. Another aspect of supporting a US church plant is that after a short time the new church will be supporting foreign missionaries. In fact, new church plants are one of the greatest resources for missionaries on deputation to garner new support. Making American church planting a part of the missions budget soon provides more finances for church planting all around the world. Another advantage of church planting in the United States is that a church planter will not require as much money to get started as will most foreign missionaries. In one year a church planter can usually raise enough support to step out by faith and start a church. It will not be necessary to learn a language and it will not be necessary to acquire a visa. The ultimate goal is to start churches all over the world. However, if we lose our homebase of churches, our resources for raising up new missionaries and new financial support will be diminished. Someone said, “The light that shines the brightest at home, shines the farthest.” If we are to fulfill the Great Commission, I am absolutely convinced of the necessity of starting churches at home. The most effective way to fulfill the Great Commission is to follow the pattern found in Acts 1:8. Preach the Gospel to your Jerusalem, then your neighboring Judaea, then Samaria, and finally to the uttermost part of the earth. Make USA church planting a part of your missions budget. You may find that your investment will result in more missionaries crossing the ocean to the regions beyond. BIMI Reseeding America Church Planters Available for Weekend Missions Meetings, Services and Conferences This past December we were pleased to welcome Ed and Mary Beard and John and Abbey Lafreniere to our growing group of Reseeding America church planting families. Both couples have been accepted as USA missionaries with BIMI. The Beards will be planting a new church outside of Annapolis, Maryland, and the Lafrenieres will be church planting in Fairfield, Connecticut. These couples are starting their deputation ministries and would be a blessing to your church. Ron Manuel and his family will be starting the Lighthouse Baptist Church in Goodyear Arizona, September 2012. They are now living in Avondale, Arizona, near where the new church will be started and are busy with preparations for the start-up of the new church. They will be available for weekend meetings, mid-week services or a missions conference in the Southwest through the summer. Phil Rizzo and his family will be starting the City Baptist Church in Hoboken, New Jersey, September of 2012. They will also be available for weekend meetings, midweek services or a missions conference. You may contact any of the above missionaries by calling BIMI at 423–344–5050 or going to for more information. Ed & Mary Beard John & Abbey Lafreniere Ron & Shelby Manuel Phil & Jennifer Rizzo