Friday, June 29, 2007

Multi-Site and Andy Stanley Part 1

This post is in response to a post by Michael called Question for Andy Stanley. Here is part of his post and the main questions he was asking:
But here is my question. What happens when Andy retires? He has such a following (and rightfully so). His teaching really seems to drive these partner churches. Northpoint does such a great job reproducing bands and worship leaders - where is that when it comes to developing teachers and pastors? I heard Andy say at a Drive conference that there are people on his staff that could deliver his messages with excellence. Why not send them out, as real pastors/planters, to start churches? Why build or launch a strategic partner around video? Though he's the best teacher around in my opinion, can we not find other qualified teachers and leaders to start these churches?
I can't answer those questions for Andy as I don't know him or have been to his church. What I can do is answer how I would do it. So if I had the opportunity to do a multi-site church here is how:

As I write this I am going to assume and say that first and foremost all the spiritual dynamics will be in place. What I am more going to talk about is the organizational side and the message side that Michael brings up in his post.

First, a lot of time would be spent on developing the initial church, structure wise. This would ensure that as new sites are launched with pastors who do not have to spend time and energy developing them from scratch. I see raising up people from within who will have the spiritual DNA needed to launch new sites. Developing an one year internship program and/or raising up people through ministries to develop the skills necessary to lead a church would be a system used to place people. This initial church would also staff to handle the technological development to free the other sites for ministry.

Secondly, I see a team approach to message development like CCC has that is utilizing the Big Idea approach. There would be an initial brainstorming meeting that develops the programming for the year and then the teaching pastoral staff from all churches would come together in one manner or the other to develop the weekly message. Once that message was developed then each pastor would take it back to teach on Sunday. Time and money would be spent each year bringing the teaching staff together for communication workshops to increase their skills. This approach would ensure great communication to each church as well as save each pastor valuable time. Less time would be spent on creating a video-site ministry as would be spent on developing people in the role of teaching. (It would be a little more detailed than that but I don't want this to be really long although I may come back and develop this more.)

I will continue to unwrap this in some future posts. I don't presume to have it all down but would love to experiment with this system.

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