The senior leadership of the North American Mission Board (NAMB) recently approved adding Kansas City to the Send City list, bringing the total to 30. The intent has been from the start of the Send North America emphasis to add cities to the list as able. Due to the strategic role of Kansas City in the Midwest – a major demographic, cultural, economic and theological influence – it was decided to move ahead of schedule and add Kansas City to the Send City list.
The Send North America emphasis of the NAMB is about penetrating lost-ness in the most under-served, unreached areas of North America, and conserving the harvest through evangelism and church planting. Significant progress is being made. The goal of NAMB is to see a net gain of 5,000 new Southern Baptist congregations by 2022, which would turn out to be the greatest decade of net gain in the history of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).
Send Cities are selected by their density of population, lost-ness and the low ratio of SBC churches to population. In each of the Send Cities, NAMB regional vice presidents, along with a regional mobilizer, work to establish local strategy teams. The purpose of the local strategy team is to create on-site and in context a church planting strategy for each Send City. The local strategy team consists of pastors, associational leaders, state convention representatives, a local pastor as chairman, a city coordinator and NAMB representatives.
It is the responsibility of the local strategy team to put dots on the map – how many new churches are needed? Where? What kind? – which becomes the “City Plan” and submitted on-line to the North American Mission Board. The leadership team at NAMB then looks over the plan, not for approval but for a response. The entire team at NAMB is involved so that NAMB can determine how best to help further facilitate the strategy, find additional resources, recruit partners and provide media coverage.
In January 2013 an initial meeting is being planned in Kansas City with pastors, convention representatives, associational leadership and other key leaders to begin the Send City process – determining who will be on the local strategy team, defining the geographic area for Send Kansas City, and beginning discussions about the needs and organization. The intent is to bring as many pastors and key partners to the table as possible to work together toward a comprehensive strategy.
We covet your prayers for this major church planting effort in Kansas City. We ask that you pray for every household and against every stronghold in the Kansas City area, that God’s Spirit will anoint the efforts to penetrate the lostness and conserve the harvest through our church planting efforts. We ask for you to begin now praying for God to call out strategic partners and quality church planters.
NAMB is excited to be a partner in this Send City effort to impact the lostness of the Kansas City area. It is an incredible day in SBC life through the Send North America emphasis! High expectations abound as our Southern Baptist family catches a new, fresh vision for penetrating lost-ness, planting new churches and as a result watching God change the spiritual landscape of not only the Midwest but all of North America. “Whatever it takes…!”