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10 Characteristics of a Church Planter - Minimum Requirements

In April, I posted the 10 Characteristics of a Church Planter – a compilation of the characteristics and micro-skills we look for in planters – informed by our own Acts 29 assessment, and the assessment work of Charles Ridley, Mark Dever, J. Allen Thompson and others. The full list of characteristics and their corresponding 60 micro-skills is available here


Since then, I wanted to know just how important each characteristic and micro-skill was to our Acts 29 members who are doing assessments, and wanted to create a standard minimum score for the 10 Characteristics.


We polled our members, and from a little over 80 responses gathered some very helpful data I’d like to share with you.


General Scoring


With a possible 300 points available among 60 micro-skills, the minimum score required was 84%.


The Top Three Characteristics:

  1. Spiritual Vitality (93% score minimum)
  2. Strong Marriage & Family Life (88% score minimum)
  3. Theological Clarity (87% score minimum)


An encouraging element of second and third places is that they display a balance amongst our church planters in both the mental and applied knowledge of their theological beliefs. We do not want to be among the pastors who sacrifice their families for ministry, and divorce head-knowledge of the gospel from our personal practice of it.


The Top Five Micro-Skills:

  1. “He gives evidence of a personal relationship with Jesus and a transformed life.” (4.9/5) -Spiritual Vitality
  2. “He has a deep commitment to Biblical authority.” (4.8/5) – Spiritual Vitality
  3. “He confesses the life of an Elder above reproach.” (4.8/5) – Spiritual Vitality
  4. “He models a lifestyle of following Jesus.” (4.8/5) – Disciple-Making Skills
  5. “He professes a healthy sexual relationship and purity within marriage.” (4.7/5) – Strong Marriage & Family Life


Our next step is to apply all the scores we have and weight our assessments appropriately. We are thankful to all the Acts 29 members who participated in this survey, helping us sharpen our assessment even more. 


John Fooshee

on Aug 13, 2009 :: 8:39 am

It's refreshing to see the priorities among the Acts 29 pastors. I pray that the Holy Spirit would empower future church planters to live these kinds of lives!