One of the wonderful developments in Reformed denominations in the last generation is a renewed emphasis on church planting. It is a burgeoning movement in my denomination (PCA), and one of the reasons that RTS Charlotte launched the Center for Church Planting last Fall.
One of the notable features of this new church planting movement is the near exclusive focus on planting churches in cities. Most church planters, it seems, want to go urban and not rural.
And let me say that there are many positives about this focus on cities. Certainly, and most obviously, cities are filled with lots of people and for that reason alone make a good target area for church plants. There are also strategic considerations. Targeting leaders and influencers–many of which are located in major cities–makes a lot of sense.
However, in recent years, this interest in the urban has sometimes turned into a superiority of the urban, and even a disdain of the rural. Those who are a part of urban churches can sometimes project an attitude, even unwittingly, that urban centers are where “real” ministry happens. [Read more…]