This is the final installment in a four part series on planting Calvary Chapel churches. Read part 1, part 2, and part 3.
4. To Meet a Need for a Calvary Chapel Church
a. Calvary Chapel churches are different: Few churches combine the characteristics that reflect the philosophy of Calvary Chapel, especially the emphasis of expositional Bible teaching and a balanced and open view of the work of the Holy Spirit. Many churches do not teach the Bible. Consider are there churches in the proposed community that teach through the Bible, and believe that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are available today, and are to be exercised decently and in order. Essentially, if there are already sufficient “Calvary Chapel type” churches in the area then find a place where there is a need.
b. Growing suburban and metropolitan urban areas: Growing suburban communities often need churches. The city in essence grows faster than the number of churches. In metropolitan a areas there are so many people and so many activities that it is difficult for existing churches to be able to effectively influence their city. Urban areas often lack healthy churches that are effectively reaching the city. As demographics shift in a community there is often a need for different types of churches to meet the needs.
c. Dying churches need to be replaced: If there are many churches in the area that are experiencing significant decline and are essentially dying there is likely a need for a fresh work. What percentage of the community is likely attending services on any given Sunday? Will a Calvary Chapel church positively influence God’s kingdom in that community?
d. A current generation may have difficulty relating to the culture of an older generation church: When a community is characterized by churches that are reaching an older generation and their children but is not reaching young adults there is likely a need for a Calvary Chapel type church.
e. Is there a fit between the church planter and the community? What are a particular community’s needs? An urban metro pastor may be ineffective in a rural agrarian area. A pastor with a passion for the arts is likely to be more effective in a metro area. A college town may need a young pastor who students relate to. An inner city area that experiences many hardships may need a leader who can champion social justice as well as teach. A suburban white-collar area likely needs a pastor who can connect with people intellectually as well as socially. In essence, you need to consider not only is there a need for a Calvary Chapel church but is the church planter a fit for the community. Generally, especially initially, you will reach people in the community who are culturally similar to one another and to the lead pastor. So, you should seek to find a community where there is a good fit.