I just read some interesting stats comparing differences between fast growing and struggling church plants in their first three years:

  • Only 9 percent of fast-growing church planters are given salary support past 4 years; 44 percent of struggling church planters are supported past 3 years.
  • 63 percent of fast-growing church planters raise additional funding for the church plant. Only 23 percent of struggling church planters raise additional funding.
  • Planters leading fast-growing church plants are given more freedom to cast their own vision, choose their own target audience, and they have more freedom in the spending of finances.
  • Fast-growing church plants have multiple paid staff. Two paid staff members was a majority among the church plants.
  • A majority of fast-growing church plants utilize two or more volunteer staff as part of the church planting team prior to public launch.
  • Fast-growing church plants utilize more seed families than struggling church plants.
  • Fast-growing church plants use both preview services and small groups to build the initial core group.
  • Fast-growing church plants that use preview services used three or more of these services prior to public launch. A large contingent of these churches use over five.
  • Fast-growing church plants have children and teen ministries in place at time of launch and offer at least three ministry opportunities to first-time attendees.
  • 57 percent of fast-growing church plants teach financial stewardship during the first 6 months from public launch. By contrast only 40 percent of struggling church plants teach financial stewardship.

I found these at http://enrichmentjournal.ag.org/200904/200904_068_Priorities_sb.cfm Also, see some of the other articles/sidebars linked on that page, especially http://enrichmentjournal.ag.org/200904/200904_068_FastGrowing_sb.cfm .