Quick to Listen/Episode 48 | 33 min

Tim Keller’s 20-Year Plan to Avoid Building a Megachurch

Mark Dever joins Quick to Listen to discuss pastoral succession, raising up church leaders in your congregation, and megachurch pitfalls.
Tim Keller’s 20-Year Plan to Avoid Building a Megachurch

Did you hear the news about renowned evangelical pastor and author Tim Keller? From CT’s report:

Later this year, Redeemer Presbyterian will no longer be a multisite megachurch in Manhattan, and Tim Keller will no longer be its senior pastor.

Keller, 66, announced at all eight Sunday services today that he will be stepping down from the pulpit. The move corresponds with a decades-long plan to transition the single Presbyterian Church in America congregation—which has grown to 5,000 members since it began 28 years ago—into three particular churches.

His last day as senior pastor will be July 1.

This plan has been a long time in the making:

The transition follows a vision plan Redeemer set in place back in 1997, and preparing Keller’s three successors—the pastors at each of the new particular churches—ended up as a helpful side effect. “This is not primarily a succession plan,” Kathy Keller said. “It is a vision for not being a megachurch.”

Each of the three Redeemer churches will remain collegial and still partner together for programs, but will officially be their own congregations with their own leaders and elders (pending a May 20 congregational vote). They also each will plant churches in three more locations—resulting in nine total daughter churches.

Keller has been “typically wise and humble” in how he carried out his pastoral succession, said Capitol Hill Baptist Church pastor and Keller friend Mark Dever.

“This as a more constructive model than is often done where a large congregation is built very much around the personality of the preacher, and when that preacher’s gone the whole thing kind of dissolves,” said Dever.

Dever joined assistant editor Morgan Lee and editor in chief Mark Galli on Quick to Listen about whether pastors should fight against their church becoming a megachurch, why the senior pastor should share the pulpit, and if pastors should have a say in choosing their successors.

December
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Tim Keller’s 20-Year Plan to Avoid Building a Megachurch