Like I was saying....

Darrin Patrick

Two weeks ago I traveled to Tupelo to be a part of a church planters school. It’s a group of people who have been together for a little while, but I was able to sit in on it because it was held at our sister church. Darrin Patrick was in from St. Louis. Darrin is the pastor of The Journey, a church he started a few years ago.

He was quite interesting. Pretty conservative in his theology, but not at all in methodology and practice. I know you can’t take everything a person says and take it as “the way to do everything you do”. But he had some really interesting insights into different things.

I took notes. And here are a few things I scribbled down:

“The local church is the hope for the world”
denominationalism is decaying, but networks are rising. they need to partner together
Worships is contextualized for the areas of the city that The Journey is in. And yes, they do hymns.
They do celebratory worship at the end of the service because “they’ve met God and now respond to Him.”

People who did not grow up in church are anchorless…so they need anchoring.

Only 2% of churches reach 800 people in attendance.
Of church plants that “make it” after 3 years: the avg. attendance after 1 year is 40, 2 years is 80, and after three years is 120ish.

Who is Jesus? What did He come to do? :: Never stray away from that!
Determine what is in your closed fist and your open hand. Make sure the Truth is in your fist, and the methodologies are in your open palm.

Mobilize the church to serve the city. The goal of your church is not to put butts in the seats.

Spiritual warfare is MASSIVE upon church plants. So guard against it. And protect your family as well.
The gospel has to penetrate your heart.

To break the 150 barrier you have to be innovative.

Repackaging how you present small groups.. Are we pushing small groups as a program, or the value we seek to find in small groups (community, discipleship, belonging, serving.) Cast the vision on the Biblical value. Show them Jesus, not a program to count numbers.

People want something more than a program. They want to be able to see a holistic vision.

Don’t substitute days off for Sabbaths.
You don’t want your church to be a mission in community, but a community on mission.

Confront sin where you see it happening in your church following Matthew 18. Might have to remove membership & communion privileges.

Contextualization: Not giving people what they want. It’s giving them God’s answers – which they may not want – in forms they can comprehend.

-What are the questions of culture?

How do we clearly display Christ so that people can accurately accept or deny His claims.


  1. Travis Thompson

    Thanks for sharing this.

    I heard Darrin Patrick had the Whiteboard Sessions in May. I’d never heard of him before and I was pretty impressed.

    I like the stuff in your notes.

  2. Blake

    He was really practical and very personable. And he could have talked all day/night he said. I probably could have listened and asked questions.

    Did you ever think he looked sorta like Stephen King? Not always, but sometimes he did.

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