Church Planting Movements in Europe

Vista 18 Catching a wave: church planting movements in EuropeDefinitions are not fixed. The meanings of words are always in movement—even the word “movement” itself.

Although it was David Garrison’s work on church planting movements (CPMs) which both popularized the phrase and set off the search for generalizable principles drawn from CPMs around the world, it was Roland Allen who first drew attention to the Spontaneous Expansion of the Church and the Causes which Hinder it (1927).

Certainly the language of “movement” has become very popular in recent years. Authors and conference speakers often refer to “missional movements” or “kingdom movements”. Yet it is worth remembering that Roland Allen kept the church at the centre the vision for growth.

Yet here in Europe does it make any sense at all to talk about CPMs at all? Joanne Appleton’s lead article seeks to answer that question. Drawing on conversations with leaders of rapidly reproducing churches and “kingdom movements” she raises a number of crucial issues for reflection.

The remainder of this issue of Vista is given over to case studies of European church planting movements. Darrell Jackson tells the story of the development of a vision for church planting in a traditional denomination, the European Baptist Federation. It is followed by an interview with Peter J Farmer, an influential leader in the Simple Church network.

We then look at two ways in which a mission agency, specifically ECM, the European Christian Mission, has contributed to church multiplication. The first is my own story of supporting a collaborative church planting in the south of Spain. And Stephen Bell concludes the edition with a story of revival in the Balkans where ECM served as a channel for Brazilian and Ukrainian missionaries to support churches.

Download Vista 18 here

Jim Memory

Explore posts in the same categories: Balkans, Baptist, church planting, emerging, European Christian Mission, mission, Uncategorized

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One Comment on “Church Planting Movements in Europe”


  1. Thank you for highlighting the opportunities and challenges of Church Planting Movements in Europe.

    I am reminded that the first such movements were arguably in Europe: Paul asked believers in Thessaloniki to pray that “the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you” (2 Thessalonians 3:1).

    One things this issue of Vista highlighted is particularly common to my European and other partners: seemingly unique challenges!

    Because of this, I have developed a simple process that may be helpful to those reading this as well:

    1. Define the problem in one word.
    2. Look for the biblical precedent.
    3. Refocus on disciple making skills and principles.

    (See more details at http://bit.ly/uDMMsChallenges)

    Thank you again for a significant contribution to the advancement of Church Planting and Disciple Making Movements throughout Europe.

    Kirk Anderson


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