originally posted at sojournnetwork.com:
It has been our joy to be Acts 29 partnering churches. We joined because we saw tremendous potential in the leadership of Acts 29 to plant churches across the country, and we were eager to be a part of that momentum. Over the years, we served as board members, participated at conferences, hosted regional events and boot camps, and planted churches. We saw that vision realized as Acts 29 grew, matured, and planted hundreds of churches.
The network was (and remains) a widely diverse group, with house-church-influenced organic churches and multi-thousand-member mega churches. The network brought this diversity together, collaborating and conversing on mission, theology and leadership.
In recent years, Sojourn’s vision for church planting has begun to crystalize around a particular set of philosophical values and practices. We want to multiply a particular kind of DNA and plant churches that are carriers of that theological and philosophical vision. This is not to presume that our particular “recipe” is more pure or better than anyone else’s. Rather, it’s born out of the realization that with our particular leadership skills, our particular vision, and the resources before us, we are most likely to succeed when we invest our resources towards this vision.
Because of this narrowing of our focus, we believed that the best course for us moving forward was to be sent out of the Acts 29 Network in order to launch a new, autonomous church planting network focused on this vision – Sojourn Network. Just as a church planter is sent from a body of believers to plant a new church, we asked (and received) the blessing of Acts 29 to be sent as a new network. We stepped out of Acts 29, both as an affinity network and as members.
After countless hours of prayerful deliberation, we believed that this decision was the best thing for both us and Acts 29. We remain deeply indebted to our Acts 29 friends, and our desire is not to sever those relationships, but to pioneer a new alliance as we grow the Sojourn Network. Our hope, and our firm conviction, is that the fruit of this will be more unity, more strength, and more churches planting churches.
We’re thankful for the rich and fruitful partnership we’ve had in the gospel with all the Acts 29 churches over the past several years. What lies ahead, in our minds, redefines that partnership, but by no means ends it.
We’re excited about the future of Sojourn Network, and also the future of Acts 29. We rejoice in their recently announced transition, and are excited for what the future holds for Matt Chandler as well as Mark Driscoll. These men are our friends and partners in the gospel. We look forward to continued opportunities to lock arms with them and all of Acts 29, as the gospel moves forward.