Turning Point Update
RON HAMILTON, CCCC CONFERENCE MINISTER
We currently have Turning Point projects with seven churches in Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Vermont. Other churches have contacted us to inquire about the Turning Point process. These projects provide a model for future Gospel ministry for churches that face an uncertain future.
In summary, we offer several options to churches that are struggling to survive.
- Full church development training – some churches need encouragement that things are not as bad as they appear. These churches have the critical mass and resources to enter into the LifeFlow process that provides training and coaching. We trust that through this process the effective ministry of the Gospel can be restored in the near future in these congregations.
- Directed development – some churches are not ready to close but have experienced a long period of decline and discouragement. We conduct a healthy survey of the church, utilizing the Natural Church Development (NCD) process. With the assistance of a trained NCD coach, we help the church focus on one area of ministry that can spark new life and hope in the church.
- Replant – some churches are down to a handful of faithful people who have kept the church open. They know that the church cannot continue, and they vote to close the church and turn their building and financial assets over to a new group to replant the church. The CCCC selects the replant pastor and provides interim leadership until a new vital ministry takes root in the community.
- Legacy – some churches vote to close and invest their remaining resources in the Kingdom work of replanting new churches. We help prepare for a healthy closing where the church celebrates generations of Gospel ministry. In the past twenty years, the CCCC has reinvested over two million dollars provided by legacy gifts from congregations who have closed and directed their assets to the planting of new churches across our nation.
We understand how difficult it is for church leaders to face the reality that their current ministry is not sustainable. The Turning Point process is an invitation for a member congregation to enter a season of turn-around ministry. The CCCC believes that the local church belongs to Jesus Christ and is his instrument in this world to expand the Kingdom of God. The church is the bride of Christ and Jesus says that even the gates of hell will not be able to stand against it (Matthew 16:18). We want to see every CCCC congregation experience this kind of fruitful ministry.
The Turning Point framework exists within the fabric of relationships – specifically the relationship between the CCCC and the local church. We are tied to one another as brothers and sisters in Christ, and we are his disciples. As we begin working together, we affirm that covenant relationship as we develop a process for future ministry.