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5 Core Values

3. To vigorously plant new churches

The One Percent Solution

By Steve Pike and Jerilyn Osborn

The Point Church in Westbury, N.Y.

In May, The Point Church in Westbury, N.Y., became the first Perpetual Matching Fund Church to become a member of the Church Multiplication Network’s One Percent Club.

The One Percent Club was actually founded by Pastor Steven Long of Ridgeline Church in Waddell, Ariz. Long heard about the Perpetual Matching Fund after it was too late for him to apply, but thought it was such a great idea that he and the people of Ridgeline decided to send 1 percent of their nondesignated income to support CMN and the Perpetual Matching Fund. Thus the One Percent Club was born.

A church can become a One Percent Club member by simply giving 1 percent of nondesignated income to CMN. It’s a great way to invest in church planting all across America.

But The Point Church is in a class by itself. It was started as a Perpetual Matching Fund church in 2007. In fact, it was one of the first seven churches launched utilizing Matching Fund money. From the very beginning, Pastor Todd Bishop was determined to help people find Jesus and help start other life-giving churches at the same time. God blessed The Point, and they quickly replenished the original $30,000 they received from the Church Multiplication Network.

In May, Bishop made history by paying forward the final portion. To help illustrate the power of the Perpetual Matching Fund, Bishop came to Springfield, Mo., and participated in a ceremony in which he presented a $30,000 check to Paul Stewart, a planter preparing to launch The Gateway Church in Iowa. Stewart says he looks forward to doing the same for another planter once his new church plant pays forward the money they received from The Point via CMN.

Now that The Point has paid it forward, they will continue to invest 1 percent of their nondesignated income into helping other planters get off to a strong start through the services of the Church Multiplication Network. They also plan to launch their first daughter church sometime around their second anniversary.

-- STEVE PIKE, national director of the Church Multiplication Network


Journey Community Church of Cleveland, Ohio

After spending two years in Louisiana following Hurricane Katrina, Jim Wilkes and his wife, Jennifer, felt God call them to plant a church. Traveling to his hometown of Cleveland for business, Jim felt the Lord stir his heart to plant there.

In June of 2008, Jim and his family moved to Cleveland, Ohio, trusting God to guide their efforts as they started a weekly Bible study in their home with three other couples.

Six months later, Jim and Jennifer realized that their group was quickly outgrowing its space.

“Our Bible study grew from three couples to 45 people,” says Jim. “Once we started growing and filled the house, we knew we had to look for a new location. We couldn’t afford it, but we took steps of faith to do that.”

The Wilkeses found a 30,000-square-foot building for sale.

“It was an old church that had declined,” Jim says. “We asked if we could rent it.”

On March 29, 2009, nearly 400 people attended the launch service for Journey Community Church.

“When I got up to preach I was excited and numb at the same time,” Jim says. “I was really amazed at how many people had come out from the community and excited to see the beginnings of fulfillment of what God had whispered to us a year ago.”

That day, four people gave their hearts to God. Over the next two weeks, an additional 14 people accepted Christ as their Savior.

“The Matching Funds were the catalyst for us to launch Journey,” says Jim. “Its use was vital in our church launch being a huge success. We would not be where we are without the springboard of the matching funds.”

Looking back on his church multiplication experience, Jim sees God’s hand at work.

“The money issue was our biggest challenge,” he says. “We took great steps of faith and risk. Whether we had the resources or not, we planned as if we had them. Each time God asked us to risk something or do something beyond ourselves, He has always come through. He has always met us right where we need to be.”

-- JERILYN OSBORN, assistant editor for the Church Multiplication Network

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