10 Questions You Need to Ask before connecting with a house church network

CS WS 1, House Church

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The interplay of all these questions will help one understand the deeper core values of a house church network.

  1. What is the network’s top priority: Mission or Maintenance?
  2. Are there any geographical boundaries/limitations to starting a house church within this network?
  3. Is one required to obtain permission to start a house church?
  4. Do privilege and responsibility go together in the network’s leadership model?
    • Are the priesthood of all believers empowered to do all the work of disciplemaking?
    • Who is tasked with disciplemaking?
    • Who gives the Bible studies?
    • Who baptizes people?
  5. Are network mentors/coaches readily available?
    • Have they raised up and multiplied a house church as a lay person, rather than paid clergy?
    • Are they currently part of a lay-led house church?
  6. Who handles the money?
    • Some networks assess a percentage of your offerings to cover network expenses.
    • Some networks require tithe and offerings be collected in conventional church settings (not in the local house church).
    • Who decides how offerings and donations are used?
  7. To whom are you accountable?
    • Some networks connect house churches to other house churches and some networks connect house churches to existing conventional churches.
  8. Should a house church be a “lone ranger”?
    • House churches who participate in a missionally designed network tend to evidence stronger missional health.
  9. What is considered “missional health”?
    • J. D. Payne, in his landmark book Missional House Churches, limited his research to house churches that 1) Witnessed at least one baptism every year, and 2) multiplied their house church every three years. This seems to be a reasonable baseline for a missional house church.
  10.  Learn more—Watch the 10 Principles of Church Planting Movements.