You Can Help Support Church Planting
All 290 congregations within the Missouri District have their own unique story of how they came to be. There are churches within our state that can trace their origins all the way back to the very beginning of the LCMS, while others began their story began in recent history…and some are just getting started! Here we feature church planting at three phases: just completed, in the works, and about to begin.
Praise and Worship Lutheran Church in Branson knows all about new beginnings. Before becoming a chartered LCMS congregation in 2013 and eventually moving into their own space in 2020, the community worshipped in a theater, a restaurant, and a winery.
“Circumstances like these force you to trust the Lord as they unfold, but when you look back and can see what He was planning the whole time, then His joy fills you again and again as more and more people come into His family through the waters of baptism, the proclamation of His Gospel and loving warmth of His people who have reached out into the community!” says Praise and Worship’s pastor, Rev. Mark Hunsaker.
While Praise and Worship’s time of being known as a church plant has come to an end, My Church in Ozark is one of several ministry efforts in Missouri currently experiencing these early days of forming a congregation. Rev. Jim Bartok shares, “In two years, God has grown our church from eleven people meeting in my living room during a pandemic to forty-five people who are on fire for Jesus.” Because the journey to start a new congregation is a long one, it could be easy to become distracted by setbacks and difficulties. God has a way of taking care of all of that, too. “The joys far outweigh the challenges,” says Pastor Bartok.
Conversations are already underway for a new church plant somewhere in the rapidly expanding northern suburbs of Kansas City. Rev. Frank Greene, pastor at King of Kings Lutheran in Kansas City, knows there’s uncertainty in doing something like this but finds assurance in the One is leading the effort. “The Lord has been preparing us to do something big for His kingdom here in Kansas City. We don’t know exactly what He has planned for our community, but we are confident He will guide us,” he shares.
The planting of a new congregation requires a significant amount of time and financial resources. It’s an undertaking the Missouri District has been a part of many times over and will continue to do as the Lord directs where and when these new starts should happen. These are ventures we’ve been blessed to be a part of—made all the more blessed through the generosity of our donors. Thank you for your mission-minded way of thinking! It’s clearly a testament to your faith in our wise God.
If you would like to financially support church planting or any other Missouri District project, please contact Leah at firstname.lastname@example.org. God’s blessings!