Leadership Development: People and Capacity

By Adrian Van Giessen, Christian Reformed Home Missions regional leader for Eastern Canada & church planting catalyst co-leader


Every church plant seems to need more leaders than it has. As a former church planter, I remember how often leadership development used to come up in our discussions. Yet we seldom moved past conversations about the need for more leaders to conversations about how to develop those leaders. That needs to change.

In “Developing Leadership in Your Church Plant,” Bob Logan argues that starting a multiplication movement takes intentional leadership development. He breaks it down into two tasks: developing people and developing the capacity of your organization.

Developing People

Developing people means recognizing their ministry gifts and helping them cultivate and use those gifts. This is a multiplication leader’s primary task. It requires both leadership vision and disciplined patience. Not being involved in the ministry of developing people limits what God can do through you as a multiplication leader.

Developing the Capacity of Your Organization

The second task multiplication leaders face: increasing the overall capacity of the groups they lead. That means being willing to reorganize your church and change the way you lead as your ministry grows. In a new church plant, the church planter might be involved in every aspect of ministry. But when the church grows to 300 people, that isn’t possible. Ignoring the organizational needs of your church might limit what God is able to do through you.

What could you be doing to improve your organizational and people development effort? Do you tend to focus on one area more than the other? How might you balance them better?

Here are two resources I’ve found helpful:

The Missional Journey: Multiplying Disciples and Churches by Robert Logan

Viral Churches: Helping Church Planters Become Movement Makers by Ed Stetzer and Warren Bird.