A church planter has so many tasks to do in order to plant the church. Meet new people, follow up with contacts, prepare Bible studies and sermons, look for a meeting location, train leaders. As a church planter, you will need to learn time management. Making a plan for your time before the day or the week begins will help you stay on track to move towards your church planting goals.
Here is what we recommend to church planters for how they spend their time each week. Of course, these time guidelines are not set in stone since each church plant is different, but this a good start.
MY WEEK AS A CHURCH PLANTER
- Teaching the Word (approx. 16-20 hrs)
- Study and preparation for the sermon (9-11 hrs)
- Study and preparation for various teaching (2-3 hrs)
- Preparation of home group studies (2-3 hrs)
- Discipleship (3-4 hr)
- Corporate worship – if established (approx. 6 hrs)
- Service planning/ bulletin preparation (3 hrs)
- PowerPoint preparation (1 hr)
- Sunday morning setup (1 hr)
- Worship rehearsal (1 hr)
- Shepherding the flock and family (10-? hrs)
- Personal and family devotional time: prayer, meditation, Bible reading (daily)
- Visits/phone calls/meals with folks (5-6 hrs)
- Transitional Leadership Team meetings (4-5 hrs/month)
- Preparation work for meetings (2-3 hrs)
- Meetings (2 hrs once a month)
- Administrative team (1-2 hrs)
- Evangelism / Community involvement (8-10 hrs)
- Community surveying utilizing the CE manual (Quarterly)
- Community contacts (avg. 2 hrs/week) see below Misc. contacts
- Community evangelism – prayer walks, follow-up/referral contacts, visitation, etc (6-8 hrs)
- Meet with community leaders/individuals (1 hr/week)
- Broader Church activities (including transportation times) (limit as necessary)
- Church Extension mentoring meetings
- Meet with director once a month (3-5 hours/meeting depending on location)
- Church planter Roundtable meetings (1) (7 hours/meeting )
- Church planter Training (2) (8 hours/meeting)
- Annual Report (1) (6 hours)
- Ongoing training
- Church Extension mentoring meetings
- Administrative responsibilities (3-4 hrs/week)
- Website/calendar updates
- Long-term planning
- Occasional publications (brochures, events, new movers, postcards, etc)
- Promotional blasts (radio stations, community calendars, social media)
- Supporter Newsletters every 2-3 months
- Thank you notes and other correspondence with supporters
- Annual reporting monthly and once a year (church and church extension)
- Other (limit as necessary)
- Theological/pastoral/sociological/historical study
- Building needs if required (arranging work teams, occasional work, etc)
- Other outreaches i.e. summer outreaches, special events, target community outreaches
- Visits to supporting Churches (at least yearly)
- Misc. involvements/contacts:
1) Door-to-door literature solicitation of the immediate target area and your own neighborhood.
2) Handing business cards out to local business managers/owners.
3) Placing posters is visible and willing businesses and offices.
4) Holding regular lunches with key leaders in the Mission Church and the community.
5) Visiting work places of people from the Mission Church (taking tours of the work places, factories or businesses of your people).
6) Visiting local media sites: radio stations, newsprint publishers, etc.
7) Visiting local schools on a regular basis and interviewing principals.
8) Visiting local public officials and interviewing them.
9) Holding public forums on those needs you discovered through your community surveying.
10) Holding luncheons for local public officials, firemen, police, business people; with interesting speakers sharing on relevant topics.
11) Attending local borough or township meetings a few times a year and volunteering on a committee.
12) Creating a mailing list from all your contacting in the target area and sending our a quarterly newsletter from the Mission Church.
13) Formulating a PSA (Public Service Announcement) listing and sending our PSAs on a regular basis about your events, services, etc.
14) Holding “Senior” meetings for the elderly in your target area and those in the Mission Church i.e. a bi-monthly luncheon with a gust speaker, a craft or workshop, something coordinated with the local senior center, etc.
As you can see there are a lot of ways that a church planter could potentially spend his time. Here is a weekly planner which one of our Bible Fellowship Church church planters adapted and used while he was planting his church. This time management planner helped him stay on track with his priorities and gave him a way to take steps towards reaching the goals God had laid on his heart for the church plant.
Feel free to download and print this planner for your own use. If you are involved in church ministry in a different capacity you might also find this to be a helpful tool for time management in ministry.