Who is New Generations?
New Generations is an international Christian ministry that partners with God and national leaders to launch Disciple Making Movements among the world’s least reached people.
Why does New Generations exist?
We believe that the only way to complete the Great Commission is for ordinary people to multiply disciples in their natural networks of friends and family. But this does not happen without a catalyst and will never have ‘game changing’ impact unless it can scale to global proportions.
Therefore, New Generations exists to accelerate the completion of the Great Commission by empowering individuals and organizations around the world to unleash Disciple Making Movements that foster a lifestyle of personal discovery of God’s will in His Word, immediate obedience and a consistent pattern of passing on what they are learning within their circles of influence.
What are Disciple Making Movements?
Disciple Making Movements are based on simple, Biblical principles. It focuses on making obedient disciples of Christ who gladly make more disciples. What begins slowly produces incredible fruit, and unbelievable results over time as the impact of God’s kingdom multiplies, transforming lives, families, communities, and nations. (Matthew 13:31-33) The Disciple Making Movement began with a handful of people among unreached people groups in the 1990’s but has spread around the world, bringing millions of new people into God’s kingdom and spawning hundreds of thousands of new churches. Some of the key practices of the Disciple Making Movement are:
Like Jesus, our ministries must be rooted in prayer. We can only reach our communities if we love them, and we can only love them if we pray for them.
Compassionate ministry in Christ’s name emerges out of personal and corporate prayer for a community or people group. This compassionate ministry can take many forms such as food distribution, disaster relief, medical outreach, agricultural work, or sports ministry.
Finding People of Peace
Jesus told his followers to search for welcoming people or “persons of peace” when they entered a new community. (Matthew 10:11; Luke 10:5-6) Disciple Making Movements begin with these key individuals who are doorways to share the Good News of Christ with their families, friends, and communities.
Gathering Disciples to Hear and Obey God’s Word
When people open to the message of Christ are found, they are gathered to read, hear, and obey God’s word, using a simple small group format known as Discovery Bible Study (DBS). In a DBS or Discovery Group, the goal is to immediately obey God’s Word. As people respond to God’s Word and apply it to their lives they learn to trust God and in time totally surrender their lives to Christ. Because the focus of the groups is simply hearing and obeying the Bible, expert teachers are not needed and new groups can quickly begin. As new groups multiply, churches are formed by the new baptized followers.
Mentoring New Believers and Leaders
Just as we see Jesus do in the Gospels and Paul do in the Book of Acts, new followers of Jesus are relationally mentored to grow and become leaders and, in turn, leaders of leaders.
What is your calling?
We believe the Holy Spirit is authoring a new era of His work on the earth and that this new era will be centered around the kind of obedience based reproductive discipleship that turned the world upside down through the early church. The calling of New Generations is to train national leaders to launch and sustain Disciple Making Movements and help like-minded ministries around the world to do the same. The purpose of this new organization is to see DMMs launched either directly, through partnerships or through ministries we help influence in every people group and population segment. In this regard, we believe that God is calling us to establish a ‘Global Scope’ and ‘Global Voice’ for DMM.”
The idea of a Global Scope for DMM is not about saturation. It is about establishing a representative ‘proof of concept’ in every major region of the world. There are two basic reasons for this. First, to put the ‘leaven in the lump’ so the catalytic nature of DMM can begin to work around the world and secondly, to silence the skeptics who say, ‘DMM won’t work here.’
A ‘Global Scope’ for DMM will lead to a credible ‘Global Voice’ that will allow us to speak into the conversation about completing the Great Commission and attract partners who want to incorporate the DMM process in their ministries. Our specific intent with a ‘Global Voice’ is to distill the concepts and produce the tools that will inspire, educate and train other ministries to be able to understand, apply and transfer the principles of obedience based reproductive discipleship throughout the span of their influence.Mathew10:8 says, ‘Freely you have received, freely give.’ In that spirit, New Generations is committed to an ‘open handed –unbranded’ policy that offers whatever we develop for use by any part of the greater Body of Christ.
What is your history?
New Generations emerged out of the ministry of Cityteam. Cityteam began in 1957 as San Jose Rescue Mission, a ministry to the homeless in San Jose, California. Over the years Cityteam’s compassionate ministry to hurting people grew to other U.S. cities. In the 1990’s Cityteam’s international division was begun to plant churches among the world’s least reached people. Following the retirement of Cityteam’s longtime CEO in 2017, the international division was commissioned by the board as a separate and independent ministry, taking the name New Generations
Who does New Generations serve?
New Generations is serving a broad cross-section of the Body of Christ that we train and coach to launch and sustain Disciple Making Movements including:
- Indigenous ‘apostles’ (church planters) that we train, send & coach
- Indigenous & western missionary organizations
- Indigenous & western service organizations
- Indigenous & western denominations
- Indigenous & western ministry networks/alliances
- Indigenous & western Bible colleges
- Indigenous local churches
- Western partner churches we train to do DMM in their home areas
- Individual western believers who use our materials to practice DMM in their personal networks
How has God used New Generations?
Since New Generations began using the Disciple Making Movement strategy in 2005, we have had the privilege of partnering with God and indigenous leaders to catalyze over 117,267 churches with more than 2.4 million new disciples—many from places where the gospel had not sprouted or spread for over a century. However, “movements” of churches planting churches are our main measure of success. We define a “movement” as at least 100 new churches that have multiplied to the fourth generation or beyond. To our amazement, we are tracking over 195 new movements that God has birthed through our team of indigenous leaders.
What is the mission of New Generations?
To catalyze Disciple Making Movements everywhere.
What are your guiding principles?
Disciple Making Movements come straight from the heart of God, therefore they are sustained through prayer. We pray and mobilize prayer to launch Spirit-empowered disciples because movements don’t happen without prayer.
We believe the Lord of the Harvest is personally and directly preparing and anointing leaders from every corner of the earth to ignite and lead movements. In recognition of this, our leadership team is diverse, with leaders from different nations and backgrounds working together to make decisions and set the strategy to fulfill our mission.
We are committed to planting the Gospel so that it multiplies through natural social networks as disciples are made and new churches are planted.
The Bible is our ultimate authority so that indigenous leaders and churches are not dependent on outside leaders, church tradition, or human curriculum. We trust God’s Word and God’s Spirit to guide his people in shaping their lives, relationships, and worship patterns.
Simple and immediate obedience to God’s Word is at the center of our disciple making, because Jesus called us to teach people to obey his commands.
We collect stories and pay close attention to numbers, because each number represents a person that God loves. We also monitor results to maximize impact. We carefully track what we are doing with qualitative and quantitative research. We depend on this actionable intelligence to make mission-critical decisions and to learn and improve our methods and teamwork.
Our calling and methods are not our own. We humbly learn from others and freely share our own insights, methods, and training so that Christ’s church together can reach those that have yet to know and serve him.
What problem is New Generations trying to solve?
The basic problem we are addressing is the lack of a simple, sustainable and scalable system for catalyzing movements of obedient disciples that can virally reproduce within their natural networks as a way to engage the billions of people that are outside the reach of traditional missions.
God created man to flourish in alignment with His will or suffer in alienation outside it. The options are an upward spiral of blessing or a downward spiral of destruction. Man has chosen to disobey God and the result is that the foundations for a successful physical and spiritual life have crumbled.
The Psalmist summarizes the problem by saying, ‘The enemy has damaged everything’ (Ps. 74:3) and ‘If the foundations are destroyed, what will the righteous do?’ (Ps. 11:3). Therein lies the problem. When the foundations are destroyed, programs don’t provide solutions, they only treat symptoms.
Lots of good things are happening in ministry around the world. They are real and we should celebrate them. But in the big picture God’s people are winning some battles but losing the war! The most generous estimates say that 30% of the world’s population is Christian. After more than 2,000 years of effort and investment, 30% success still means we are suffering from 70% failure. The so-called ‘solutions’ in place provide answers for hundreds and thousands but the need is for millions and billions. The approaches missionaries have been using are simply not sufficient to finish the task.
“Your system is perfectly designed for the results you are achieving.”
Unfortunately, the traditional missionary ‘system’:
- Takes too long – At the rate we are going, most of the world’s 5 billion plus lost souls will be dead before the gospel arrives
- Costs too much – $15 Billion a year, spent by Christians worldwide, is barely maintaining the status quo while vast sections of the world remain untouched
- Stops too short – God’s people are busy with lots of ‘nice’ things that stop well short of making disciples and teaching them to obey all that Jesus commanded
- Doesn’t reproduce – What has been planted for the most part are “seedless grapes.” The fruit is real but it only lasts one generation
- Doesn’t transform – A gospel focused on Jesus as Savior without including Jesus as Lord does not transform individuals or society
- Depends on Professionals – Outside professionals are limited and expensive. An army of ordinary people is the only hope for the massive unfinished task
- Creates dependency – Local ministry too often is tethered to outside money
- Doesn’t multiply leaders – Lacks the capacity to train the 50 million new leaders required for a 1/100 ratio of the 5 billion lost souls
What are the key elements of your methodology?
Our ‘ministry compass’ points to the least reached and most neglected. We train indigenous leaders to launch and sustain DMMs that are simple, sustainable and scalable.
Simple: The idea of a “movement” is something that can ripple from generation to generation, so it must reproduce organically. The engine that drives DMM is an easy to understand process we call “Discovery Bible Studies” (DBS). Groups of spiritually interested people gather to answer four basic questions about a passage of Scripture; What does it say? What does it mean? What will you do in response? Who can you tell what you have learned? This simple process gets ordinary people interacting with God’s Word, it gets them obeying His will, and it gets them encouraging their friends and family to do the same. This is the foundation that “movements” are built on.
Sustainable: The reality in ministry is, “What you win them with is what you win them to.” When new life in Christ occurs in the context of obedience-based discipleship, it is normal and natural to do what Jesus said in every area of life. When God’s people follow His instructions, He gives them everything they need to advance His Kingdom. When every disciple is praying, there is power. When every disciple is serving, the workforce is unlimited. When every disciple is giving, there is money to meet needs. When every disciple is ‘loving their neighbor,’ communities are transformed. And when every believer is reproducing, there are always new disciples.
Scalable: We have developed and refined 10 elements of Disciple Making Movements and proven their effectiveness with many different people groups and conditions in Africa and Asia:
- Basic – Ordinary people discovering God’s will and obeying
- Reproducible – Nothing is used that is not locally available
- Low Cost – Only $500 +/- is required to start a new church with 20 followers
- Locally Sustainable – Doesn’t depend on long term on outside resources
- Multiplication – Disciples making disciples and churches planting churches
- Leadership Multiplication – Every leader trains other leaders
- Everyone Involved – All are involved in sharing what they have learned
- Self-Correcting – Obedience based, peer group accountability
- No Imposed Culture – The Bible provides the answers not an outsider
- Transformational – Transformed people change families and communities
How reliable are the numbers?
We take record-keeping and accuracy very seriously. Here’s how we maintain accuracy in our numbers:
1). Commitment to 3D Evaluation
We focus on encouraging 3-dimensional evaluation: deep, wide, and long (quality, quantity, and sustainability). This now includes 14 factors measuring the health and growth of engagements. Our team reports these evaluations quarterly.
2). Global Shepherding Support Team and Regional Shepherding Insight Coaches
Each region has a team member (Shepherding Insight Coach or SIC) dedicated to our 3D evaluation. Their role is to cross-check the information being submitted and provide insight for the local leaders who have a pastoral role of caring for disciples. The global Shepherding Support Team (SST) develops and supports the culture of evaluation by walking alongside SICs and Regional Directors to help mine the evaluation indicators for insight.
3). Research Protocols
- QUARTERLY EVALUATION CONVERSATIONS (QEC) – After partners and church planters report what is happening with their engagements each quarter, our Global Team vets the information and produces visualizations.
- ANNUAL PLANNING –This happens when regional leaders and their teams evaluate where their engagements are on our Engagement Grid and prayerfully make goals for each engagement to progress toward movement. How they plan to allocate their resources according to these priorities is what we call an Engagement Plan.
- INTERNAL QUALITATIVE ASSESSMENT (IQA) – We interview disciples at the 4th, 5th, or 6th generation level of a movement, pastors, leaders, focus groups, etc. with DMM movement and spiritual DNA questions.
- INTERNAL AUDIT – An Internal Audit is another level of verification of our results that are reported and cross-checked quarterly. Our quarterly report is a snapshot in time recording new results. In addition, we do periodic Internal Audits to ensure that reported results consider Attrition (churches die), Amalgamation (small units merged into one larger unit), and Migration (groups no longer found: driven out of sight by war, famine, persecution, etc.).
- EXTERNAL AUDIT – An External Audit is done by an outside group on our historical results. The purpose is for third-party organizations to verify the results that are happening on the field. We work with organizations like the International Mission Board to assist us with these audits.
Where can I learn more?
To learn more about New Generations, its approach, or how you can invest in the ministry, visit our about page.
To read or watch more about Disciple Making Movements, check out the articles, videos, and books in our “Resource” menu at the top of this page.
To hear from some of the ministries and leaders endorsing New Generations visit this endorsements page.
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