Tuesday, October 2, 2012

The Ragamuffin Fellowship: A Church Planting and Discipleship Strategy


In one of my church planting classes I attended during my Graduate years my classmates and I were challenged to analyze the health of the church. With this knowledge we continued to take a closer look at our own denominations. The discovery that many denominations were, and still are, in a predicament made me want to find out why the church that had so much impact on myself during my childhood was seemingly loosing its grip on the next generation.
            As we researched the Church Planting Movement we discovered that every denomination was struggling to have not just healthy but also growing congregations.  These discoveries transformed our class time and for that matter the conversation out side of class into heated discussions.  With a friend of mine, who had been a pastor in my own denomination for quite some time I started discussing the answer to the problem. The question was: Is there hope? And furthermore, what should we as future church planters do?  We did realize that the strategies used in the past seemed to have become ineffective in reaching the new age group. So now, we found ourselves in a dilemma. Watching this generation without a church home grow up in front of our eyes, we as future pastors of these congregations realized the necessity to become leaders with an effective method based on a new vision. And this vision had to obviously be a ground breaking, almost pioneer like strategy, close to the approach of the work of missionaries in new and undiscovered cultures. 
            I believe in the Church and I believe it will accomplish God’s purposes on this earth.  I wonder though, why it should not be possible to work with the existing Churches? And furthermore: Why a Church plant to the next generation?  Why not the current Church?  Jesus calls the church HIS bride. And for the sake of the “existing Bride”, shouldn’t we respect what others have done and what tradition has proven. Nevertheless, it is quite obvious that the Church as it exists today in the West is not reaching them.  So I began to see that it is not a bad thing to plant new Churches. In taking a look at the life cycle of the Church in the past, we will gain a better understanding of where and why the Church in America is where it is today.
.  In working in a “Church planting” Church I experienced first hand that these traditional churches really only planted Churches that ended up being just like themselves. And with this observation I started to realize that if we wanted to reach the Next Generation, Church planting was absolutely necessary. I learned that the only way we could do this was to create new concepts independently from traditional churches.  In doing this we could be able to take the message of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth through this generation.  I also realized that it would not happen in the Church as it stands today.  The reason for this dichotomy is that the Church is not their own. It belongs to God and should be based on biblical and godly principals only and not on the “tradition of our fathers”.  That is why the rift has to take place because the traditional Church will by nature hold on to its tradition.
Some further experiences I had with the above mentioned church were that I was told that the youth of the Church could not lead in worship because they were “not wise”.  And that is where the rationale of Church planting for the next generation was solidified within me.  I started to ask the question, when will they be able to lead when they are 35 and the worries of life have crept in so they cannot hear the call of God?  The Scriptures are ripe with young leaders that led the Church, Timothy, Mark, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, Daniel, and nearly all of the early Church.    
The Church must go to the next generation or it will die with this generation. 
I believe that Scripture teaches that Christ will not abandon His Church until all has been accomplished, and so Church planting to the next generation is the answer to our predicament.
            Recently I had the privilege of going to a prayer and vision meeting in Toronto, Canada, with a group of other church planters. It was interesting what God started to lay on all of our hearts. We were immersed into the vision that God would accomplish the task of global evangelization in this generation.  It was a wonderful experience to lift our voices in unison to God our Father, interceding for this generation to reach the nations.  It seems to me that the Bible is ripe with reference to minister from one generation to the next. This is the way that church planting is to be seen in the future. It is a “one generation to the next” type of ministry, without a judgmental and stubborn “holding on to the old”. And if we are able to teach this acceptance to our next churches, we will raise healthy congregations. 
As now explained there are many rational for doing a new generational Church. Tony Jones calls it cultural landscaping which he addresses in his book Postmodern Youth Ministry. 
For a long time we’ve thought of missions as leaving our local context and bringing the Good News to another part of the world.  That’s because Christianity has reigned in the West for almost all of the 2,000 years of its existence.  But that’s over.  The Christian faith no longer reigns supreme.  So it’s crucial that youth workers shift their focus from caretakers of the status quo to that of missionaries in a foreign land—and that foreign land is right in your youth room.  Youth workers are missionaries.  We’ve known this in theory for a long time, but in the postmodern world it must be our primary means of self-definition.  Mission work in a post-Christian world takes time, energy, and patience.  Youth workers can no longer waltz into a community and think that everyone will come running because there’s a concert at Church on Friday night.  It’s going to be a lengthy process that takes cultural study, prayer, and long-term commitment.[1]       

Youth ministry and new generational Church planting will be missional in nature.  We can also conclude that it will take a long time to accomplish a successful ministry to the next generation. 
            George Barna has researched the part of our next generation that we call the mosaic generation and found that of those involved in spirituality or some kind of “Church”; only 10% want to have the Church as part of their lives in the future.  That shows that the Church is barely reaching those who are already involved in Spiritual things now. And after graduation we will loose them. 
Their needs to be something for them, something that they can own,
something that gives them hope and a future.

Some have labeled this the “hopeless generation”.  Shouldn’t we have hope for them?  Who is going to be ambitious to find fulfillment for their needs?  The world has definitely not done it for them. The World is the one telling them they cannot do it.  The Church needs to rise to answer the call to engage this hopeless generation through planting relevant Churches that will interact with them on a different level. 
            It seems like our Church is always one generation from dying out.  I believe, that the Lord Our God will not allow that to happen. However he leaves it up to us to rise up and become World Christians.    We have to “give” the church to the next generation because they will not take it from us, there is no automatic transfer.  Older leaders are not willing or unable to “pass the torch”, so new Churches are needed for us to be able to continue as a Church.
            Barna in his book Boiling Point gives us a schematic of the mosaic generation and the baby bust generation. I personally like these models.  The Mosaics are born form 1985-2004.  This is the most current and not yet finished generation.  These are teenagers of today.  The other group is the Baby Bust Generation.  They were born from 1965-1984.  These are sometimes also called Generation X[2].  Both generations build their life attitude on relationships.
With this concept we can be a relational based Church in model, seeking to build relationships and transplant a DNA of "relationality".  We will strive to influence and be influenced in relationships as our core design model.  I will also like to integrate the idea of a “purpose driven model”.  The Church will always be driven by the purposes that God himself has set up in the Scriptures.  If we are not aiming at being driven by the purposes of God then we become purposeless vague leaders.  Relational churches are usually smaller however, I want to describe a relational Church that is a growing vibrant large Church, but with a small Church feeling: “The larger we get the smaller we get”.
            I am interested in maximum impact. That is the reason why I believe we should use the Generational and the Purpose Driven approach together.  I understand that the larger a Church gets the more impact they will have. But the fact is that the larger a church gets the easier it is for people to get lost in the shuffle.  So I would like Churches to stay with maximum impact and with maximum "relationality", through which true growth can take place in a believer’s life.  Included in this mandate is the responsibility to give ourselves the space for continuous discipleship, while reaching the generation we are engaged with.
            To use this model of giving meaning and purpose through a relational atmosphere is furthermore very biblical.  We see in Acts 2:42-47 that the Church was constantly growing day by day and at the same time enjoying the deep fellowship of the body.  It says they met in homes and in the temple courts.  They worshiped the Most High God in the temple and also worshiped the Most Nigh God from house to house. They had the best of both worlds.  They were incredibly intentional in that they were always visible and at the same time continuing to meet in their homes for relational worship and fellowship. 

A description of the target group[3]
Within Generation X (also called Baby Bust Generation) are a number of sub cultures:
§               Extreme Xers---Leisure, fun, recreation, thrills, experiences, fast paced lifestyle, and adrenaline
§                     Underground Xers---wear black, freedom, disillusioned, searching for answers, very intelligent.
§                     Digital Xers---Techno-music, dance, new age, technological literate, short attention spans, lack  
            of social skills, fear of relationships, isolated.
§                     Slacker Xers---Disillusioned, despairing, entitled, angry, cynical, and pragmatic.
§                     Super Xers---Activists, conservative, multi-cultural, idealistic, and optimistic.
§                     Urban Xers---Angry, gangs, violent, drugs, wanting out but not knowing how.[4]

The following is taken from Real Teens By George Barna:
§                     Boarders---Kids whose relationships and free time hinge on skateboarding, rollerblading or
§                     Gothics---Fascinated by gothic clothing, makeup, music and environments.  Among their
            trademarks are black clothing, silver jewelry, pale skin and candles.
§                     Gays---homosexuals who have proudly emerged from “the closet”
§                     Skinheads---Hyper-conservatives, who have racist leanings, freely use physical intimidation and
            support violent means to advance their reign.
§                     Greenies---climbers, bicyclists, and hikers who love the outdoors and support environmental
             causes and animal-rights groups. 
§                     Geeks---a.k.a. nerds or “digit-heads” these are the computer whizzes of their age group, and they 
            spend hours engaged in learning computer programming, surfing the Internet and tinkering with
electronic gadgetry.
§                     Jocks---the physically fit youths who live for competitive sports. 
§                     Hip Hop---rappers often black and Hispanic youths, these are kids who love rap and hip-hop
            music, have a distaste for authority and see violence as a means to an end. 
§                     Metalheads---covered with tattoos and body piercing, this group is characterized by
            motorcycles, loud heavy metal music and clothing that is peppered with silver studs and chains.
§                     Preps---a.k.a. “buttondowns”, they are focused on academics and getting into the premier
            colleges, saving money and becoming successful in their chosen career.
§                     Jesus Freaks---these youths are known to pray at school, carry their Bibles with them, attend
            youth group meetings during the week and wear jewelry and clothing that proclaim their faith in
§                     Gearheads---the new form of “greasers,” these kids live for their cars, working on their engines  
           and waking their vehicles to a shining reflection[5]
(Please notice that this information does not necessarily reflect the way I view the generation.  It is just a framework for understanding the cultural landscape.)
How do busters view themselves?
1.                  The majority of the unchurched over 50% and over 40% of the churched came from broken families---the pain of divorce and it’s fallout is a factor in this generation.
2.                  (Generalization)  Mothers are praised and many feel they were very helpful and close to them.
Fathers are described as distant or absent. The absence of the father was a hurtful subject. Those people whose parents were still together saw themselves as in the minority and fortunate.
In general they have rejected the easy divorce pattern of their parents. They describe marriage as “forever”, “takes work”, “permanent” and “a commitment to make it work.” They hope that this will be a generation in which the divorce rate will decline.
1.                  Television:
q                   They like programs that portray real life: Cops, Seinfeld, ER, Party of five etc…
q                   They like programs that talk about real relationships. Seinfeld, ER, Party of five
q                   They like programs that they can zone out too: Cartoons, sports.
q                   Some do not watch television because they feel they have informational overload.
2.                  Music 
    A broad spectrum of preferences:
§         Classic rock-alternative music
§         50% liked modern country, 50% hate it.
3.                  Attention span:
They admit to having a short attention span. They say that if something does not grab them they tune out quickly. They regard anything that does not have a good flow and pace as being boring.
4.                  Time:
They live for today, viewing the future as "scary". There is a great deal of doubt whether they will achieve the American dream and reach the material position of their parents.
The most common comments are too big, corrupt, too distant and too intrusive. They have a basic distrust of political systems and therefore tend to drop out of the political process opting to make a difference where they are.
There is not much support for welfare as it exists because they view it as "abused", "a mess," "overburdened" and "needing an overhaul".
Personal outlook on life:
Inner self:
Busters have a desire to live with self-integrity. They describe themselves as having a lot of pain. They are concerned that they do what is right in relationships and that their peers accept them.  They struggle with knowing how to change to what they want to be.
Among the unchurched, fear of disease is the driving force towards abstinence rather than moral or spiritual reasons.  Sadly with a few exceptions the churched students mirrored the same attitudes as the unchurched.

Life Problems:
They have a basic distrust of simple solutions to tough problems. They are not sure whom they can trust because they have been let down by; school parents, government, church etc.
They are more than happy to discuss spiritual matters looking for a faith that works practically in their lives. They view denominational labels and absolute truth as a non-issue.
Their view of the church (note the church & unchurched had almost identical views.)[6]:
They see the church as racist.  A number of those interviewed had stories of how their African American friends had not been welcomed at church. This generation views itself as tolerant and colorblind and does not want to engage any group that is racist.
"Intolerant" "Bible thumpers", "having more rules than God does" are a few expressions given to express their view of the churches legalism. They reference the Baptists, saying they are caricatured by what they do not do, rather than by what they do.
Most had had some experience of church and found it to be boring, slow-paced, technologically retarded and not relevant to their lives.
They saw the church as "too political". They see the power struggles and fighting in the church and conclude it no different than the world.  This generation is concerned with both "what is right" and the process it takes to get there. Process that alienates and fractures relationships is seen as wrong no matter how noble the cause.
Traditional and not relevant:
The world is out of date and touch with the world it lives among. They are looking for a faith that has a "Monday morning application". They think the church does not know about their personal struggle and needs.
The non-churched know Christians fail. Their condemnation is the hypocrisy of pretending you've got your act together when it is obvious you haven't. On top of that you condemn others for the very behavior you exhibit.  The number one barrier stated to listening to Christians is this hypocrisy issue.
Dress code:
The church seems to have a dress code that excludes certain people and "classes".
Impersonal God:
The personal nature of God was seen as missing. They were looking for a God who is "right here" and felt that the church’s God was "out there". Busters are looking for an immanent God who can be experienced and felt in the now. A faith that is simply a set of propositions to be believed without confirmation of experiences is seen as inadequate. They desire to experience a God who can make a difference.
A sense of family:
The one item mentioned positively was that churches could give a sense of family…. This came mostly from those who had grown up in the Church
In this section I will attempt to portray a set of values that I will seek to inject into the DNA of the Church by the help of the Holy Spirit.  This section is resourced by Tommy’s Interactive Church, and much of this section is taken from their Doctrinal Statement. 
Centrality: -The actions, words and presence of Jesus are the light & salt to the world and the life to the church.
Freedom: Christ came to set us free, so our ministries and teaching to both believers and unbelievers will have the same mandate. We will not place unbiblical or disputable, demands, rules or expectations on any one.
Purpose: The leadership is responsible to envision, equip and encourage the church to fulfill its purpose.
Resources: - We will model the concept of tithing by giving at least ten percent to organizations other than ourselves.
Diversity: We will strive for ethnic diversity among both the leadership and the church.
Partnership: We believe the only way we can effectively reach the city/country/world is if we seek to partner, resource and encourage other churches and Christian organizations.
Growth: We will be ambitious for the growth of every new and older believer we meet.
Multiplication: We seek to multiply churches and ministries in the city/country and world.
Teams: We believe that ministry in teams, not only has a biblical precedent, but is the most effective way to harness passion and leadership to impact the church and it's setting.
Gifts: We believe that every believer has a significant role to play in the body and we will endeavor to help them discover their gifts and place them in a setting where they will flourish. * We will make a special effort to honor the lesser gifts.
Conflict: we resolve to deal with conflict graciously and quickly.
Dependence: Our prayer life, corporately and individually, our study and teaching of His Word and our growing sensitivity to His Spirit will be gauges by which we check our reliance on God.
Innovation: We believe in a pioneering spirit, Characterized by creative methods, openness to risk, aggressive expansion, and proactive attitudes.
Leadership: We believe that leaders form the skeleton of the church; therefore we do our utmost to identify, train, encourage and multiply leaders.
Integrity & authenticity: - Will characterize our leadership and congregation.
Faithfulness: We believe faithfulness is giving our best to God and others.
Outreach: We are committed to bring the Gospel to the lost by all means possible.
·        Individual---friendship evangelism.
·        Cell---acts of caring etc.
·        Congregational seeker service monthly
·        Task force--Radio, events etc…
·        Compassion: We will love and help unconditionally those in society who cannot help themselves. (Widows, orphans, abused, depressed aged etc…)
Culturally relevant: We will be diligent to know the current interests, problems, fears & needs of the world we are living in. To direct compassion and open a door for the gospel.
Relationships:  We are a relational Church so we will value the relationships that we are cultivating and make that paramount for our congregation
Scriptural Authority:  We value and hold the Scripture up as the authority for the believer’s life, and unlike the postmodern mindset that there are no absolutes, we understand the Scriptures to be the absolute “plumbline” that we are to measure our lives by.
Generational Values:  We will value, to the degree that they are Biblical, the things that this generation values
Worship:  We will hold up public and private worship.[7]

Mission:  To establish a Church in a Center city that will reach and disciple the Mosaic and the X Generation.  We are after those who are within those two generational parameters so that we can translate the gospel from one generation to the next.  The Generation X will need to be trained in reaching down a generation.  We are also missional toward those among any generation who are interested in reaching those generations. 

Personal Mission:  However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I can finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given to me the task of testifying to the Gospel of God’s grace.  Acts 20:24

Vision:  The ultimate vision of our Church is to be a healthy Church within 5 years that is reproducible and is actively planting Next Generation Churches here and abroad.  We will always be missional and communal.  We will give our time and money to outreach motivated initiatives.  We will have the paradigm of a para-church but with the relational aspects of a discipling Church.

Personal Vision:  My vision is that an ever abounding number of Youth come to faith in Jesus, and learn to worship, follow, and obey Him in authenticity.  All within a community of faith, and in so doing learn how to reach others the same way they were reached.

Personal Strategy:  I will do whatever it takes to reach students with the Gospel unless it is unbiblical, immoral, or unethical. 

ideal Picture:  (Taken From Tommy's Interactive Church Doctrinal Statement)
Before going Public:

v                 We will form a core group which feels responsible for Postmoderns and world evangelization, is trained in; prayer, Bible study, evangelism, discipleship and small groups as well as their particular area of giftedness.
v                 Before we go public we will start a number of 'seeker' Targeted small groups so that we will start with some new believers.
v                 That we will form partnerships with para-church and churches that are interested in reaching Postmodern/Gen X.
v                 Our leadership will be multi-ethnic.

After going Public

v                 We will become adept at reaching a mobile society spiritually and compassionately.
v                 We will be ambitious and supportive of other ministries.
v                 We will train and support people who come to the Lord, and want to return as 'missionaries' to their own or other cultures.
v                 There will always be new frontiers to our work.
v                 We will pray and work at making every ministry in the church the best it can be.
v                  At least 50% of our resources will be focused on supporting our members and partners in their ministries outside the church walls. (Small groups, seeker & believer, seeker events, Missions, care ministries etc….)[8]

Support Structure:  This is a graph of the support structure that I will be using and have set up before that launch of this Church.
Prayer Team:  I would garner a prayer team of 50 people who covenant to pray with me for two years.  I would have them sign a covenant that they would promise to pray with me five times a week.  They will pray for me, my family, and the ministry of the Church.  I would continue to keep them updated as to the progress of the Church and of any personal needs by sending them a quarterly prayer letter and a monthly email.
Financial Team:  I would garner a financial support base through individual gifts, a home Church that is involved in Church planting and would support with salary, and also denominational help.  Another avenue of possibility is mission board help.  If we are going to plant new Churches then we have to send people as missionaries to familiar places.
Partners:  I would garner partners of my past network history.  This will include several of my closest prayer partners, some pastors that I have had relationships with and also my sending Church.  I will be sure to network with people who are in the plant area of the center city. 
Launch Team:  The Launch Team will include those who are Postmodern in thinking, who are Multi-generational, Multi-ethnic (hopefully many European folks).  We will have to have both generations represented.   Our Launch team will be represented by Mosaics, Generation X, and hopefully some cutting edge Boomers so that we can reach and train leadership from one generation to the next. 
Building Relationships:  There will be many different strategies for building relationships.  We will go where youth are.  We will be purposeful to be in coffee houses, Rock and Roll shows, skate parks, schools, youth centers, clubs, raves, and any other generational hangouts.  The idea behind building relationships for evangelism is that we are intentional about being where they are in their environment.  Too many times we ask youth to “come and see” when the New Testament mandate is to “go and tell”. 
People Strategies/Evangelism:  All Staff and the Launch team will be empowered to evangelize within the youth culture context.  We will train to evangelize with a mentality that it is a process and not a decision.  We will value “People over Efficiency.”[9]  We need to be open to all that God wants to do in our evangelistic strategy and not let our strategy define how we do things.  The goal in evangelism is not if they made a decision but are they followers. 
For the last few centuries, evangelism was considered mainly a cognitive process (i.e. Christianity is a set of propositions an individual must intellectually agree with and accept as true.) But more recently, the understanding of conversion has been shifting toward the transformation of the whole person.  In fact, in the postmodern context, it could be said that we ought to first evangelize experientially and teach the content of the faith later!  After all, Jesus says to his disciples, “Follow Me!” – Not “Do you accept me as your personal Lord and Savior?”[10]

This concept will be at the center of the heart of our Evangelistic strategy.  The question is not will they accept Christ but will we accept them, and be able to take them in the full circle?  Will we be able to “make disciples”?  Instead of our Evangelistic efforts we will teach a holistic disciple making strategy.  If we are not able to take people all the way then it would be unfair to try to evangelize them.  This is why we need to have these systems in place.  We need to be able to look after the fruit that God is producing amongst us.  If not then we are being unfaithful laborers.  And so the next page is our “Disciple Making Strategy”[11]

Church Multiplication Strategy:  Our vision is to be a healthy Church planting Church within five years.  Some steps that we will take to get there are first of all…
1.                  Leadership Training:  We will look for and spot potential leadership for another Church.  We     will look for things like passion, desire to plant another congregation, and have real desire to      reach people. 
2.                  Apostleship:  We will look for and seek out those who are “set apart” for the task of being lead             planter and training them in the current Church plant.
3.                  Gifting:  We will pursue the spiritual gifting of every congregational member and seek to help      them find their gifts, understand them, and use them to the glory of God.  Maybe by using them in another Church plant. 
4.                  Create a target:  Target an affinity group, demographic, subculture, or people group to plant in.
5.                  International:  We will always be on the lookout for possibilities to plant or network overseas.    An international Church plant would be exciting to this Church. 
6.                  Bolivia:  Journeyman’s trip to the mountains of Bolivia to the Quechua Indians.  Praying that the Lord would open up opportunity to plant there.
7.                  Calling:  We will look to see if God is calling a group of people together to plant.
8.                  Strategy:  Give them this strategy and help them create their own before they launch.
9.                  Evangelism:  As this Church does, all staff and launch team are expected to be “fishers of men” and in so doing they create a pool for all to evangelize.

Church Planting Movements: Like the Postmodern generation everything about whether or not this becomes a movement will depend on them, and not on the pastoral staff, we will have to incorporate the values of CPM and stand back and let the grassroots movement flow out of who they are.  This will have to be a movement so grassroots that it might not even come in on some peoples radar, but God will do it like he originally did it: with Ragamuffins. 
            To incorporate CPM into our Church we have to understand the definition…
A Church planting movement is a rapid multiplication in the number of converts and churches which results in the effective evangelization of a population segment or people group.  The universal characteristics of a CPM that we will seek to embody as a Church are…
1.                  Worship being in the heart language of the people:  We will strive to put the worship in their language in music, scriptures, video, drama, art, making everything visual, and interactive.
2.                  On the job training:  We will define training as we go and not what you have to do to “pass” our leadership training.  We will involve people in things that they feel comfortable with and passionate about.
3.                  We will have many staff:  The leadership will be spread real thin thus giving responsibility to the people at the grassroots level.  The Church will succeed or fail on their terms.
4.                  Missionaries:  We will not have a lot of “hired staff” and we will train our “Youth Culture Missionaries” in house.  We will use a Youth Culture Missionary Training Manual to accomplish this.  Lay people will be equipped to lead and grow the Church.
5.                  Simple Ecclesiology:  We will not put more into the Ecclesiology of the Church than is absolutely necessary (e.g. keeping the Lord’s Supper, Baptism, etc.).
6.                  Supernatural:  We will proclaim the release of the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, freedom to the downtrodden, and all the while proclaiming the favorable year of the Lord (Matthew 18:11).  We will model bold faith, and comfort ability with the Holy Spirit.

Information from readings

Youth Culture Stuff

What youth workers are saying?

·                    They’ve eaten form the tree of knowledge
·                    They process images in narrative images
·                    They don’t trust adults
·                    Their “B.S. detectors are always on.
·                    Their focus is fragmented
·                    They’ve had everything handed to them’
·                    They are jaded
·                    They have a “been there done that” attitude

What youth are saying

·                    The word Teenager is synonymous with, like, headache
·                    No one has any sense of humor anymore
·                    We have no one to look up to; we have nothing stable to grasp
·                    We worry all the time
·                    We’re just coasting
·                    We’re not standing for anything
·                    We desperately need to be standing for something
·                    Teens want God; they will look for him

Taken from ‘Generation 2K’ by Wendy Murray Zoba

Information from Hip-Hop Church Crossover Community Church
visited November 7th 2002

·                    The Church was started by an elder man and in 1998 he called Tommy Kylonen to be the youth pastor.
·                    At that time there were only 4 students and about 40 adults.  There was a slow move to the Hip-Hop through his outreach into the community surrounding the Church.  
·                    So he didn’t make the decision to do a hip-hop Church just right off the bat, he just decided that he would do whatever it took to reach the urban area of Tampa. 
·                    He has started his own 501c3 tax exempt status “Urban D Incorporated”.  He funnels all his expenses through that account. 
·                    They are loosely affiliated with the charismatic and Pentecostal movement.  They were able to garner so many people that have come onto staff from other backgrounds but they are not so tightly affiliated that they cannot do anything.
·                    They have freedom to do what they feel like God is calling them to do to reach the Hip-Hop Culture. 
·                    The number one style of music today in America is Hip-Hop.  Record sales show that.
·                    Be ready to have kids share stuff in “Soul Session” that they have never said to anyone. 
·                    Be ready and have a staff that can deal with everything that the devil is throwing at youth culture.  Also be ready to have emergency network for people who are
·                    Some churches set up several different 501c3 tax exempt accounts for the strict purpose of gaining and acquiring grants for the church and for pastor’s individual expense accounts and performances, etc.




[1] Jones, Tony.  Postmodern Youth Ministry (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House, 2001), p. 45-46.
[2] Barna, George & Hatch, Mark.  Boiling Point: Monitoring the Cultural Shifts in the 21st Century (Ventura, California: Regal Books, 2001), p. 56.
[3] This list was sourced in a report by the Student leaders of the Baptist Student Union.
[4] A guide to understanding Generation x sub-cultures by Ken Baugh.
[5] Barna, George.  Real Teens.  (Ventura, California: Regal Books, 2001), p. 41-42
[6] This list was sourced in a report by the Student leaders of the Baptist Student Union.

[7] Whitaker, Simon.  Tommy’s Interactive Church Doctrine.  (2000). Pgs. 10-11
[8] Ibid, p. 3-4
[9] Jones, Tony.  Postmodern Youth Ministry.  (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House, 2001), p. 123
[10] Ibid, p. 111
[11] Jones, Bill.  Mobilizing Leaders through Discipleship. 
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