Three Special Considerations for Assessing Potential Replanting Pastors
Of course, most characteristics that are successfully present in church planters are equally valuable in the life of the Replanter. An apostolic gifting for proclamation and founding a new work, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a natural ability to gather people will all serve the Replant Pastor well. However, there are some unique qualities that I have identified as extremely helpful in the replant context. They are not deal-breakers if an individual is not naturally strong in each area, but it will make their job much harder if they do not go into the mission with these three attributes in their tool belt.
1) A love
for the local church.
The Replanter must love the very idea of the local church. They don't have to love the baggage or other problems they may have seen, but they should appreciate God's great plan to use the church as his chosen vehicle to carry the Gospel. This must include a heart for seeing a redemptive narrative in each one of these congregations. In the past, a true planter would often look at an existing church and see nothing of value. They would rightfully note that it is easier to start over. In some ways it is, but not in others. In a replant you have instant people, infrastructure, legal status, and so much more that comes with building on a past legacy. Of course, you also have the negative reverse of those same elements. The Replanter must look for the divine spark in each of these elements – what blessing has God given their mission in these things that might be seen as a detriment to other planters? Replanters need to weep at the reality of churches closing all around them every week. Without this burden, they will be tempted to walk away when things get hard.