Church Planting Movement (CPM) – Our Definition

The term “CPM” is being used by almost anyone in missions to mean anything related to church planting.  When I speak of a CPM on my blog or in anything I write, my team has a very specific meaning.

A Church Planting Movement is an indigenously led Gospel Planting and obedience-based discipleship process that has resulted in a minimum of 100 new locally initiated and led churches, three generations deep, within two years.  There is trained leadership in each church, and each leader relates to a mentor. Every-Member obedience-based discipleship that leads to ministry in the community is the norm for all new Believers and leaders.  The outsider who may have initiated/catalyzed the process is not considered the first generation.  The outside leader may maintain a mentoring relationship with the growing leadership of the movement.

This definition includes leadership, discipleship, ministry, breadth, depth, and time.  Less than 100 churches, regardless of generations, do not constitute a CPM.  More than 100 churches, but not at least 3 generations deep, is not a CPM.  It has to happen within two years or it does not qualify.  The two years can count from the initiation of the work, or count back from a given point in time.  If counting back, 3 new generations must be demonstrated.  If the work is not locally initiated, locally led, and obedience-based, and ministry-producing it is not a CPM.

To see a CPM, the equipping of leadership is critical.  Our definition of leadership includes reproduction of leaders.  A leader makes more leaders regularly, and…

To see a CPM, the obedience-based discipleship of all is essential.  Our definition of a disciple includes obedience and the reproduction of disciples.  An obedient disciple makes more disciples regularly, and…

To see a CPM, Bible study groups reproduce regularly, and…

To see a CPM, churches reproduce regularly, and…

To see a CPM, church members are ministering to their communities, and the Kingdom of God is expanding from individual to individual, family to family, community to community, city to city, and nation to nation.


David Watson

San Jose, California


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