Greetings all,

'Fail to plan, plan to fail' is one of the best known cliches when it comes to developing any strategy, from a simple essay to a successful business, and everything in between. And with good reason! Teams who don't plan, don't know where they're going. Or if they do have a goal in mind, they have little idea how they're going to achieve it, and so no real confidence that they will. Worse, they may not even recognise when the path they're on is taking them in the opposite direction. 

This month Geneva Push is concentrating on putting all of best planning resources front and centre, so you and your team can do the best with the resources God gives you. Of course our primary focus is on church planting, but we think you'll find there are helpful hints here for work in every part of the Kingdom of God. So, to begin…

  • The best ways to develop a plan – Church planting wife and ministry worker Cathie Heard shares her best advice for making a plan – what do you need to consider to ensure your concept for a new ministry will bear fruit?
  •  The top three things to plan – What are the top three key plans you’d put together for a church plant? Andrew Heard shares his thoughts after decades of guiding church planters from concept to conclusion.

Then there's the type of planning that takes place so you can implement your big plans…

  • Preparing the mother church to plant – So you're thinking about the idea of becoming a hub church, but what are the steps you need to take? Time to lean on the experience of Phil Campbell (Senior Minister at Mitchelton Presbyterian Church) who's been leading the team at MPC in Brisbane since 1999. 
  • Is your launch team sticky? – Geneva Push's Director of Training Derek Hanna considers some key questions about the team you're planning to put together. In particular, the relative 'stickiness' of your core group members.
  • How to plant in regional and rural Australia – Some areas need special planning. Geneva Push's Derek Hanna interviews Bruce Bennett from Orange Evangelical Church, and Ross Pethybridge from Dalby Presbyterian Church on the distinctives and roadblocks for planting in a country location, as well as the evangelistic techniques they've found to be most helpful.

After that, there are the immediate plans that shape the first three years of life in any new congregation…

  • Mobilising effective evangelism – Geneva Push founding director and church planter Mikey Lynch teams up with Craign Hamilton from Glenmore Park Anglcan church to talk about enlisting congregation members into the great task of evangelism.
  • Developing a training culture – MTS managing director Ben Pfahlert leads a seminar in the art of developing the sort of training culture in your church that results in the long term provision of mature, well-equipped leaders.
  • Three things to sort out before starting a youth group – Matt Paterson from Living Water church in Redfern discusses the three key things needed to lay a firm foundation for your youth group – a core group, a Gospel DNA, and realistic church support.
  • Accessibility for churches – Lara Oram, an expert in managing disability, offers her insights on how to make your church accessible to the most vulnerable and often neglected members of our community.

And finally, there are big picture plans that shape the culture of your church or lay the foundations for large scale projects…

  • 5 steps to a missional culture – Keen to increase the missional focus of your church? In this post Dave Jensen, the Missions Pastor from MBM Church, shares the first five of eleven points that have helped his team create a greater missional culture within their congregation.
  • 6 more steps to a missional culture – Following up from his first post, Dave Jensen, the Missions Pastor from MBM Church, shares six more points that have helped his team create a greater missional culture within their congregation.
  • Raising money for a building – Planning that helps them plan to give! Rod Irvine, the author of 'Giving Generously: Resourcing Local Church Ministry', delivers a seminar on the specific task of raising money for a building project.

Got a big project that you hope to get going in 2018? A new ministry? A cultural shift? Now is the time to start planning, so that you can be best prepared to lead others. We hope the above resources will give you everything you need so you can tend well to the needs of the Kingdom!

– Ed.