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John Kinyon (#1964) – Small Town/Rural Church Planting


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John Kinyon (#1964) – Small Town/Rural Church Planting

What is the Problem?  There are many challenges facing the Christian church today.

  • The number of churches across the country are declining. Churches are closing faster than new ones are being planted.  In 2019, 3000 new churches were started, but 4500 closed according to a Lifeway Research study (see  And that was before covid!  It’s even worse now.  Even my own denomination, the PCA, has seen a reduction of church plants over the last 3-4 years from an average of 50/year to 15-25/year.
  • Meanwhile, the nation’s population continues to grow unabated … even in small towns and rural areas.  Since covid, people are fleeing cities, according to a recent Bloomberg Businessweek article [Sept 11, 2023 article: “Pandemic Population Boom in Rural Hotspots Sparks Resentment.”], due to covid mandates, increased crime and a lower cost of living in the country.
  • One other twist … fewer and fewer church planters today are willing to plant a new church from scratch alone; they want training/apprenticeships and they want to plant with someone else. A team. While there are benefits to team planting, it also costs more money, takes more time and requires finding the right “partner” for the task.

In an effort to reverse this negative trend, the PCA has set a goal to plant 100 churches/yr over the next 10 years.   How can this be accomplished?  It will require creative and “outside the box” ideas.  This is where I come in.  My goal is to assist in the planting of at least 5 churches in our region in 10 years, with the intent to form our own presbytery.

How do I plan to achieve this? In broad terms:

  • By co-planting with qualified planter candidates;
  • By identifying, training, and raising up future leaders locally;
  • By working with existing churches/pastors to become healthier, as well as encouraging them play a role in local church planting

Why Me? First, I grew up in small towns, and my roots are in rural soil. Second, my experience with church planting is unique. I have planted 3 very different churches in 3 very different regions, and these churches in turn have planted other churches.  Also, I’ve been a church planting assessor for almost 2 decades, I’ve served as the church planting coordinator for 2 presbyteries, and I was part of a team who planted 3 new presbyteries in PA.  Lastly, we are committed to live here, and without a Full-time church pastoral role, I have the time to devote to help others plant new works.  I want to finish my ministry years well by planting numerous churches.

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Gifts can be sent via check or money order made payable to MNA. Ministry or church plant names should be clearly designated with a note accompanying the check or money order.

Mail Checks To:

Mission to North America
P.O. Box 890233
Charlotte, NC 28289-0233