How to develop leaders in a new church

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Featuring Chris Flathers, Sean Cronin & Patrick Bradley

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Church Planting Nuts & Bolts
Episode 9 — How to develop leaders in a new church

If someone asked you, “What your church’s leadership development strategy?” How would you answer them? Would you be able to answer that with confidence and in a concise manner?

The reality is, most churches don’t have a plan or strategy for how they’ll develop leaders, but this doesn’t have to be the case. New churches have a unique opportunity to develop a culture of leadership reproduction from day one. This won’t happen by accident. It will happen with intentional planning and effort. What do you need to do in order to develop a culture of leadership reproduction in your new church?

This episode will offer answers to that crucial question.

Featured Guest

Chris Flathers

Lead pastor of Connect Church

Dr. Melissa Patton

Chief Operations Officer at both Victory Church and The Victory Corporation

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Featured Guest

Chris Flathers

Chris and his wife Amanda love Colorado and want to help Coloradans experience a life-changing relationship with God. While Chris grew up in Maine, Amanda grew up in Parker, CO and they met at Colorado Christian University. For the first couple years of marriage, Chris served on staff at a church as the Middle School and College Director in Littleton, CO while studying for his Master of Divinity at Denver Seminary. In 2015, God called Chris and Amanda to move to Maine, where Chris served as a Discipleship Pastor at Eastpoint Christian Church. They have two daughters: Hannah (a toddler) and Chloe (a baby). In 2018, God called Chris and Amanda to reach those far from Him in Colorado and the vision for Connect Church was born.

Dr. Melissa Patton

Dr. Melissa Patton serves as the Chief Operations Officer at both Victory Church and The Victory Corporation. She is an impassioned educator as well as an innovative and thriving entrepreneur. Melissa has devoted a lifetime to assisting people to better understand their purpose and potential through the vehicles of education, business development, and strategic planning. She received a bachelor’s degree in English and creative writing from Drake University, a master’s degree in community counseling from Concordia University, and a doctor of education degree in higher education and organizational change from Benedictine University. She's married to Pastor Stanley and they have two sons Micah and Mason Patton.


Sean Cronin

Sean Cronin works on staff with Passion for Planting — training, supporting, and equipping church planters. He also serves in various roles at New Life Christian Church located in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington DC. He's a graduate of Ozark Christian College and Cincinnati Bible Seminary where he studied church planting and leadership. He then put his education to work by helping start churches in his hometown of Buffalo, NY. And yes, still roots for the Bills.

Elijah Shamenda

Elijah Shamenda is the Lead pastor of Resurgence City in Buffalo NY. He is passionate about discipleship, revival, and multi-ethnic ministry. His heart for seeing communities push past the barriers that at times hold people back from experiencing the fullness of what Christ has for them is what makes his heart beat, and why he felt led to plant in the city of Buffalo. He is married to Jaynee Shamenda she is a Buffalo public school teacher and is the children's director at Resurgence City. They are the proud parents of Justus Shamenda their son. His other passions are food, sports, the creative arts, and movies his favorite being Mary Poppins (ask him about it sometime).

Patrick Bradley

An experienced practitioner in the practical nuts & bolts of planting churches, Patrick has directly supported scores of church planters since 2007. As a project manager for Passion for Planting, he walks alongside church planters during their 7- to 10-month prelaunch phase, helping them with everything from filing formation paperwork to plotting strategies and creating healthy systems for the new church. He helps planters put wheels on their vision so that it becomes reality.

We are better together!

“I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”
John 17:22-23

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