The Greatest Untapped Church Planting Resource: Senior Citizens


Restoration City simply would not exist without the incredible support we receive from individuals, foundations and partner churches.  They have poured prayer, encouragement, manpower and financial resources into the vision of Restoration City and I will be forever grateful.  We’ve had partner churches send people to serve alongside our congregation for our ServeDC outreaches.

All of which is to say I’m incredibly grateful for the body of Christ.  It’s in that spirit that I’ve come to believe we are missing one of the most strategic opportunities for existing congregations to partner with church plants.  It’s the untapped potential of retirees.

More than we need your high schoolers for a week, we need your seniors for a season.

Really want to bless a church plant?  Recruit and train a small team of spiritually mature, disciple making retirees and ask them to invest 3 years in a church plant.  Yes, that means they leave your church.  It might even mean they leave your city.  We need to think of our seniors as missionaries.

As a church planter, I can tell you that’s the greatest gift you could give us.  There’s an army of largely untapped potential in your pews.  They have time.  They need a mission. Maybe God is calling them to one last battle, to one last push.  And maybe it’s all about helping a new church thrive.

If you’re a pastor or senior interested in talking more about this, email me or leave a comment.  I would love to talk more.

Fighting The Summer Slump

There are certain things that everyone in church world knows to be true.  Let me give you a few examples.  Nobody actually reads the bulletin but if you stop printing it, there will be a revolt.  Or, live testimonies before baptisms are awesome, except for when they’re a total train wreck.  Or, churches never grow in the summer.

I want to deal with that last one today.  When you find out our church doesn’t have bulletins and usually does live testimonies, it’ll come as no surprise to you that I’m not a fan of writing off the summer either.  I simply don’t believe the Spirit of God is constrained just because it’s warm outside.

Yes, I know it’s vacation season.  Yes, I know I pastor a church in a town that virtually shuts down in the month of August.  Yes, it’s also wedding season.  Yes, our congregation is young, mobile and has some pretty impressive frequent flyer accounts.  Yes, I know the statistics about summer church growth.  So, maybe you should write this whole post off as the adorable naivete of a first year pastor.

But if you’re part of Restoration City, I hope you’ll fight with me against the summer slump.  Here’s some of what we’re already doing as a church:

  • We’ve started sending direct mail pieces to all new residents in our community because we know there are a ton of people who move TO this city every summer.
  • Our first ever summer intern started this week with the specific mission of reaching out to college students and other summer interns.
  • We’re continuing to add new Community Groups, with the newest one starting in Alexandria in mid-June.
  • Our creative team is working hard to make each of our summer gatherings a powerful encounter with Jesus.
  • We’re moving RCC Kids to better serve families with children.

But our churches’ outreach strategy has always been built on us as individuals living as ambassadors of Christ. (2 Cor. 5:20)  God’s work of restoration flows primarily through us and secondarily through the programatic things we do as a church.  So, I want to encourage us to fight the summer slump personally.  Join me in:

  • Praying the Lord will make us effective in reaching the lost in our communities and open doors for us to develop relationships with people who don’t know Jesus.
  • Initiating spiritual conversations with those we meet (particularly people we’ve been building relationships with or those who are new to the area).
  • Inviting people you meet to join you at Restoration City.

I believe God has a lot He wants to accomplish through us this summer.  So, let’s lean in together and see how He wants to use this season for His glory and the good of our city.