The Home Church Model

The Home Church Network Model

The Home Church Network (HCN) resources are specifically created to meet the needs of a particular church design or model.  This model is defined as a very small, sacramental, liturgical and spirit led church that normally meets in a home.  Each church consists of the number of people that will fit into the meeting space.  It will usually be led by laypersons.  A typical home church will often find itself led or accompanied by a theologically trained pastor or leader.  Various groups and writers today popularly refer to one form or another of this church model as a house, home, simple, or micro church.  We prefer “home” church.

Because of the nature of this kind of church, it may and usually does consist of all kinds and ages of people—even within a very small congregation.  This makeup fosters very real and close family relationships between members.  They may or may not use the terms—but aunt and uncle, grandparent, and sibling relationships rapidly grow to encompass such a congregation, who may have had little in common when they first came together.
Outreach will mostly be by word of mouth—generated among friends, co-workers, and other acquaintances, in casual conversations.  Sometimes it will be through various kinds of community promotion.  Recently, the huge number of Internet websites dedicated to “home”, “house”, “micro”, or “simple” churches and church networks—are beginning to show an increase in the rate of new home churches that are being planted—especially across North America.  In many countries around the world, of course, the private or even secretly based home church provides the only means of Christian worship as we know it.

The HCN resources are designed with the assumption that the church using them will remain a home church and will grow by reproducing new home churches.  However, the HCN allow for the understanding that any autonomous church may choose to grow by developing into a different church model in the future by choice, need, or in whatever way God leads.

One of the foci of the home-based church is to train its members in such a way that when God provides the opportunity, one or more of its family units will be sent out to begin another home church, thereby growing by reproduction.  It is rather unique among church models as its goal is to send away its best members as soon as possible to begin new home churches.  As they reproduce, these churches will work together to form networks and to co-operate together in training, ministry, fellowship, etc.