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View Final Copy of Strategic Ministry Plan for an Urban Plant

Download PDF version:
File:Strategic Ministry Plan City of Hope 3-10.pdf

City of Hope Church

Love God| Love People | Serve the City




This is not about starting another church

This is about JESUS CHRIST & The Kingdom of God

Jesus Christ is mankind’s only hope to be reconciled into a relationship with our God and Creator. The only appropriate response to this truth is to live in complete, eager submission to His will for our lives.

In our desire to obey Him, we recognize that His final words before ascending into heaven tell us not to keep this good news to ourselves, but to go and tell everyone how they can be reconciled to God. Strategically, we also recognize that over the last 2000 years no method has been more effective in accomplishing this Great Commission than church planting.

Thus, because Jesus is Lord we will plant a church-planting church.

Unfortunately, the lack of church planting (among other factors) over the past century has been a major factor in the following statistics:

According to research done by, the current increase in the number of churches is only about one quarter of what is needed to keep up with population growth. The U.S. population continues to increase, but not enough churches are being planted.
• Current churches only reach 1/8th of the population growth
• Somewhere between 3,500 and 3,800 churches close their doors in the U.S. every year
• 2,500 additional new churches are needed per year to keep up with population growth
• 80% of all churches are plateaued or declining
• These factors have lead to the U.S. becoming the fourth-largest mission field in the world.
In accordance with the call and wisdom of God, André ton and Dawn Jones are stepping out to plant City of Hope Church in the Chicago suburban area of Bolingbrook IL. to expand the Kingdom of God and offer hope in Christ to a world filled with darkness, brokenness, despair and pain.


Three main factors provide the strategic reasoning for God’s call to plant in the area:

After much pray and seeking the Lord concerning the city where He wanted us to start a church. The Lord spoke to my heart that the location of the church would be Bolingbrook IL.

Dawn and I built our first home in Bolingbrook in 2001. Our kids grew up there. We have existing connections to draw upon to build both a launch team and the church. We love the city and the people who live in the city. I am a former member of the Bolingbrook Chamber of Commerce and I was an assistant coach for the Bolingbrook Trojans football program for 3 years.

Bolingbrook is a multi-ethnic; multi-socioeconomic community of 74,667 located approx. 30 miles southwest of downtown Chicago. Between 2010 and 2015, the population is projected to increase by
13.1% or 9,798 additional persons to a population of 84,465. Based upon the total number of different groups present, the racial/ethnic diversity in the area is extremely high. Among individual groups, Anglos represent 41.3%, African-Americans 23%, Hispanic 24%, Asian 9% and other races 3%. Bolingbrook is made up of mostly families with young children. 63% of the residents are between the ages of 9-49. 63% of families are married, 11% are divorced & 26% are single. Only 33% of the residents have strong Christian religious affiliations. The other 67% are either somewhat involved or not at all. The major household concerns for this area are Neighborhood Gangs, Parenting Skills, Time for Recreation/Leisure, Satisfying Job/Career, Retirement Opportunities and Good Schools.

Bolingbrook runs alongside I-55 to the south and I-355 to the east. This will allow people from all over the area to attend the church with minimal effort, and will be a key element in our future plans to plant churches in other areas.

Thousands of residents are waiting to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ, and we are intent on bringing it to them.


André ton Jones (AJ)
Pastor André ton Jones has been preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ for over eleven years. Called to preach in 1996, He has been involved in ministry at Praise Tabernacle Deliverance Center in Chicago for 14 years. After two years of study and preparation, he was licensed to preach in December of 1998 and ordained in 2004.

He has served in numerous positions while at Praise Tabernacle most notably as Youth Pastor for five years. Under his leadership and guidance the youth ministry flourished and blossomed into a ministry effective in teaching, mentoring, and developing young people. The youth ministry grew from less than 15 to over 100 children and teenagers under his leadership. He has served in many other capacities such as Sunday School Teacher, Children’s Church Director, Asst. Youth Director, Director of Audio & Media Ministry, and Instructor of Praise Institute. He also served on the Evangelism Team.

Pastor André ton has also held positions at the local and state level. He served as District Youth Pastor of the Southside District of the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship-State of Illinois for 3 years and State Youth Director of the St. Mark Covenant Churches Fellowship for 1 year. He has had the opportunity to preach and teach across the U.S. and in various conferences.

He holds a Bachelors Degree in Religious Studies from Nations University and is pursuing a Master of Divinity Degree in Pastoral Ministries from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. Professionally Pastor Jones has been employed at AT&T for 10 years and holds Microsoft and Cisco professional computer certifications.
Pastor André ton is the former CEO of 3L Technology Consulting Group, Inc. A computer consulting company he started with his wife in 2004. He is Owner & Managing Partner of A&A Integrity Home Buyers, LLC, a real estate investment company he co-founded with his twin brother in 2008. A&A Integrity is based in Naperville, IL. Pastor Andre’ ton is married to his beautiful wife Dawn and they have two children, Luther, 16 and Deja, 14. They reside in Plainfield, IL

Dawn Jones
You can call her a jack of all trades, Dawn is no stranger to serving in the church. Dawn served alongside her husband as Children’s Ministry Director for 6 years. Dawn has a passion for the lost and served as Director of Evangelism and Outreach for 2 years at Praise Tabernacle Church. She also served as Head of the Hospitality Ministry for one year. Dawn is currently serving as Director of Drama Ministry at Praise Tabernacle. Dawn is a licensed Minister of the Gospel. She is a Wife, Mother, Entrepreneur, Playwright, and a woman of faith, whose personal testimony has blessed many. She is equipped and ready to serve!
Dawn is pursuing a Bachelor’s in Religious Studies Degree from Nations University and is a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. Dawn is employed at WMS, Inc. in Chicago where she works as Team Lead for the Desktop Support Team.


We’ve chosen to name the church, City of Hope Church. In seeking the Lord for a name for the church, we asked ourselves the question “If the Kingdom of God was in the center of our city, what would that city look like?” The answer to that question for us was it would be a City of Hope. Hope is to believe, desire, or trust in something or someone. The desire and search for a good future. The scriptural basis for our name can be found in the following scriptures:
Matthew 5:14 “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.”
Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, “declares the Lord”, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.


Love God | Love People | Serve the City
City of Hope Church is a church where people from all ethnic, social, and economic backgrounds can find hope, forgiveness, acceptance and love in the good news of Jesus Christ. We seek to be a church of worship, prayer, encouragement, and vision. We are a church who connect people to God, grow together, serve the city, and extend God’s kingdom through church planting.

We seek to be good news to those who are not a part of the church because God loves all people and we will love them also. We will love and serve the city because God loves the city. As we fulfill our mission, lives will be transformed and racial barriers will be torn down as we are reconciled to God and to one another.

2 Corinthians 5:18 (New International Version)
18All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation
Reconcile- To re-establish a close relationship between; to make good again, repair- “to bring together again,”


We have listed our values below. Our values will shape every aspect of the life of our church.

• “Preaching and Teaching the Word of God ”: We Value Application of Scripture
• “Believing in the Power of Prayer”: We Value Prayer
• “Lifting High the Name of Jesus”: We Value Praise & Worship
• “God is Honored in Excellence”: We Value Excellence

• “Reaching People Who Are Far From God”: We Value Outreach & Evangelism
• “Focusing on the Things that Unite Us, Not the Things that Divide Us”: We Value Unity and Diversity
• “Real Christ-Followers Grow”: We Value Growth
• “Growing Larger and Smaller at the Same Time”: We Value Small Groups

• “Expanding the Kingdom of God”: We Value Planting New Churches
• “Always Look To Serve, Not to Be Served”: We Value Service
• “Changing Methods—Unchanging Message”: We Value Creativity and Innovation


While our vision and values can be directly linked to biblical commands, we also recognize the Bible does
not describe specific methods to accomplish that passion. Below are some of the steps we will take to realize that passion.

Sunday service- The Sunday service will be aimed at preaching the gospel to both
believers and non-believers, taking special care to eliminate any “insider” language or
terms which may isolate them or make the feel uncomfortable. Our service will consist of a time of
high praise& worship to lift up the name of Jesus and send Praise & Adoration to God.

Starting Point Groups- These groups, held three to four times a year, will provide both
new believers and long-time believers a systematic teaching on key elements of the
Christian faith and the vision, values, and mission of the City of Hope Church. This class will be
recommended to everyone attending City of Hope Church, regardless of the length of their walk
with Jesus. This will help to keep the unity of the church, as everyone will be exposed to the same foundations and the same description of the outworking of those foundations.

Community Groups- As is common throughout most of Christendom in the U.S., we will implement a small(er) group system in our church. We choose the word “community” as opposed to “small” groups because we’re not focused on limiting the size to 8-12 people, and we believe the call of the scripture is to live in on-going biblical community with each other. These groups will facilitate study the word of God through sermon-based material and other bible based training. They will pray for each other and for the church, they will fellowship with each other in and outside of the scheduled meetings.

Life Skills Groups- We are also aware that sermon-based material may not be the most needed teaching during all seasons of life, and occasionally it will be necessary to focus on key problem areas in an effort to bring truth, love and transformation. As such, we will look to implement three different life skills groups to serve our members when they find themselves in just such a season. They will not launch until appropriate in the life of the church, but we will look to initially target marriage, raising children and financial crisis.

Racial Reconciliation Class- We are a church where all people, regardless of race, culture, or economic background can find love, acceptance, and hope. In order for racial reconciliation to take place, we recognize that there will be a need for people to be taught the biblical perspective on race and be able to share their stories in a safe and loving environment. We will teach a six week training course on Racial Reconciliation that will be recommended for all our members to attend. It is our hope that this class will help redirect people toward God’s will for racial unity, equality, and inclusion.

Compassion By Design- We will identify the areas of greatest need in our community through the compassion by design process. We will conduct needs assessment interviews with the people in our neighborhoods and communities. Our goal is to establish networks that are touching the people we are planning to reach. After the needs assessment and networks are developed we will reassess and identify the areas of greatest need in our community, evaluate which of them fall within the local church’s sphere of authority, and respond accordingly.
Love Bolingbrook- Love Bolingbrook is City of Hope’s initiative to serve the city of Bolingbrook.

Presently, our goal is to serve in the community once a month. We are also planning on reaching out to community organizations, schools, and businesses within our city. We seek to partner and volunteer to serve these organizations. This will allow us live out our core value of service. This will also assist us with building a sense of unity, service, and purpose amongst the members.

Life Skills Groups- The specifics of the groups are listed above, but are included here as a means of recognizing that those who do not know Jesus will often look for help in a specific area of their life before they look to turn it over entirely to Him. Our Life Skills Groups will be open to the community, and will be designed to not only teach life skills but introduce the attendees to the One who gives us life everlasting.

City of Hope CDC- City of Hope Community Development Corporation will be a separate
501c3 nonprofit with it’s own staff, board, and bookkeeping system. City of Hope CDC vision is for community transformation and impact that extends beyond the walls of the church. City of Hope CDC will collaborate with others to provide services and programming to all community members regardless of religious beliefs or affiliation.
Plant Churches- In answering the mandate of Jesus to go out into the world and make disciples, we will evangelize and advance the kingdom of God through church planting. City of Hope will send out and support leaders who are called and gifted to be church planters to start new churches. It is our goal to plant a new church every 3-5 years.


We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory. (Deut. 6:4; 1 Cor. 8:4-6; 1 Tim. 1:17)

The Bible
We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. All 66 books are the verbally inspired Word of God; the Bible is without error in the original writings, the complete revelation of His will for salvation, and the ultimate authority by which every realm of human knowledge and endeavor should be judged. Therefore, it is to be believed in all that it teaches, obeyed in all that it requires, and trusted in all that it promises. (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:20, 21; Matthew 5:18; John 16:12, 13)

The Human Condition
We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God’s saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed. (2 Corinthians 5:18; Matthew 9:36-38)

We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus-Israel’s promised Messiah-was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate. We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation. (Mt. 3:17; 1 Cor. 15:3-7; 1 Tim. 2:5; Rom. 5:6-11; Phil. 2:5-11; Heb 1:3; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4)

The Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its guilt. He regenerates sinners, and in Him they are baptized into union with Christ and adopted as heirs in the family of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service. (1 Cor.12:7, 11, 13; Eph.4:7-8; John 15:7; 1 John 5:14-15; Rom.12:1-8; 1 Cor.13; 1 Pet.4:10-11; Acts 1:7-8 )

The Church
We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God’s grace through faith alone in Christ alone. They are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. The true church is manifest in local churches, whose membership should be composed of believers. The Lord Jesus mandated two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. Though they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer. These ordinances are done in obedience to the Great Head of the Church, who is Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 11:23-34; Matthew 26:26-29; Eph. 1:22,23; 5:24-30; I Cor. 12:4-13,27; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 8:12, 36-38; 9:18; 10:47)

Christ’s Return
We believe in the personal, bodily and premillennial return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The coming of Christ, at a time known only to God, demands constant expectancy and, as our blessed hope, motivates the believer to godly living, sacrificial service and energetic mission.( Matthew 24:23-31; Matthew 24:36-44; Acts 1:10-11; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:1-8; 1 John 3:2)


What is a Launch Team?
A launch team is a team of people committed to assisting the lead pastor in strategic planning, preparation, and team building for the church launch. Church planting is a “team sport,” and people of all ages play a vital role within the team- adults, students, teenagers, and children.

A launch team is focused on the aspects of launching, the assignments, and responsibilities. Their job is to get this church off the ground, and their part is to train and prepare for the launch. A true launch team is focused on inviting and investing in people in their relational world.

As we gear up for this strategic launch, we are thrilled to be meeting new friends who share in our vision to fulfill the mission of Jesus Christ for His Church today. That’s why over the next few months, we will have preview services and weekly launch team meetings. The preview services will allow us the opportunity to invite the community to some and worship with us in a Sunday service and allow us to “practice” for our grand opening on Sunday September 5th, 2010. These previews will allow new comers to join our launch team and allow us to assess and tweak our Sunday morning service before we start going to week to week services. Launch team meetings will be held weekly to allow launch team members to prepare and plan preview services, community outreach events, and comeback events. These weekly meetings will allow us to form ministry teams and prepare for our Launch on September 5th, 2010.

The launch team meetings are a great time to meet new friends, get acquainted with our leadership, ask questions about our church, and find out how you can be involved in this exciting journey of faith.

“Can I bring my children?” Absolutely! We love children and have accommodations for them at the interest meetings. They will even have a blast.

It is going to take a huge, diverse team of hundreds of men, women, children, and families to build this movement of City of Hope Church from the ground up! Nothing in the world is more exciting than building a church. And trust me, we’re not talking about bricks and steeples…we’re talking about building a community of faith that can change the world! We believe that the time for this movement is right now and we want you to be a part of it. Your gifts, your input, your skills, and your social networks will be utilized as a part of something that is bigger than yourself that will bring depth and excitement to your life.

Don’t worry if you don’t have any previous church experience or don’t speak Christianese because that is not really what we are looking for! Don’t worry if you aren’t perfect, because no perfect people are allowed! Whatever season you find yourself in, we want you to launch team. We need friendly people, graphic artists, financial planners, dreamers, educators, married couples, singles, people that are good with children and teenagers, web designers, grandparents, all types of musicians, single parents, office managers, lighting and sound technicians, film editors, human beings, actors and actresses, dj’s, painters, singers and vocalists, sanitation workers, sculptors, poets, writers, service planners, set designers, camera operators, truck drivers, police officers and security workers, and more! If you don’t fit any of these categories, we are also looking for angry, bitter, sad, lonely, frustrated, and depressed people that want to change!

We can’t do it without you. Let’s Share Hope!

Launch Team Strategy
The launch team will to meet regularly to work on
inviting friends to join, traditional marketing (fliers, ads, social networking, web,
etc.), creating some community service events, gathering portable church equipment,
planning the children’s ministry, as well as developing our core ministries plan.
This team will plan, promote, and run 3 to 5 monthly, preview services to build
momentum and practice for our future weekly gatherings. In addition, this team will
work to promote the City of Hope through inviting neighbors, assisting with a few key community outreach events, and help with some traditional marketing. Finally this team will work to connect
relationally which will form the foundation of our church community.

Fall Launch
The most popular time to launch a church is fall. With the beginning of a new school year, everyone
sets their schedule and signs-up for their commitments. Unlike Easter, you don’t hit summer travel just a few months after launching. However, building momentum before you begin is more difficult since it is during the summer months. A similar schedule would follow. Preview services would begin in April or May and run monthly through the summer. Again, this is a time of practice and momentum building. Publicity and community service opportunities would happen during these months. Finally, weekly services would launch on September 5th, 2010.

By our launch on September 5th, 2010 we will have developed seven core ministries and be
working to develop an 8th during the first year. Our goal is to launch with a full
Sunday morning service (including children’s ministry, worship, & hospitality) as well
as an outreach program, an assimilation program and a community service program.

Our essential ministry components are:
• Hospitality / ushers / greeters
• Facility setup/teardown
• Children
• Worship / sound
• Assimilation
• Marketing / evangelism / outreach
• Community impact (serving community)
• Discipleship / small groups (to be developed during the first year)


Upcoming Events (subject to change)
02/07/10: Super bowl Party
03/25/10: Launch Team Meeting
05/09/10: 1st Preview worship service
05/22/10: Comeback Event
06/13/10: 2nd preview worship service
06/26/10: Comeback Event
07/11/10: 3rd preview worship service
07/24/10: Comeback Event
08/01/10: 4th preview worship service
08/14/10: Comeback Event
09/05/10: Public Launch Service (Grand Opening)
A more detailed calendar will be available and distributed at the weekly Launch Team Meetings


Phone- 630-544-9714 (coming in March/April)
Facebook Group Name - City of Hope Church


Our budget must reflect our vision to reach people who are far from God and to serve our community beyond the four walls of the church. Below is a breakdown of our first year expenses.

We expect to meet our budget through denomination support, funding partners and tithes & offering of our members.

//Staff Expenses $33,000
Senior Pastor
Worship Leader
Children’s Pastor/Director
Health Insurance/Pension

//Location Expenses $28,600
Building & Insurance

//Website $700

//Marketing Expenses $25,000
Communication Cards
Door Hangers
Direct Mail Campaigns
Banners & Signage
Advertisements (Newspaper & Radio)
Giveaway items

//Administrative Expenses $5,000
Office Equipment
Office Supplies
Church Management Software

//Weekend Worship Expenses $65,000
Sound & Lighting
Video Projectors/Screens
Computers & Software
Guest Packages
Children’s Ministry Supplies
Portable Trailer & Pick-up Truck
Hospitality & Info Center
Communion Supplies
Portable Baptistry

//Community Outreach Expenses $10,000
Block Parties
Park & Facility Rentals
Outdoor Event Equipment & Supplies

TOTAL $167,300


We need your prayers. Please pray for City of Hope Church, our leadership team, changed lives, and for the favor of God in our community.
Specific Prayers:
- Our Family
- Church Location
- People to join our launch team
- Favor with Bolingbrook businesses, politicians, officials
- The success of our Launch

As a new church, we have a lot of initial start up costs. We are asking that you or your church partner with us. We welcome any and all amounts. All donations are tax deductible.
- You can send any gifts to:
City of Hope Church
11550 Legacy Dr.
Plainfield IL., 60585
- Please make all checks payable to City of Hope Church. We will mail you a statement acknowledging your gift for tax purposes
- If interested you are welcome to sponsor a project such as a video projector, sound equipment, children’s toys, banners, etc.
- You may have extra children’s ministry supplies, sound & video equipment, lighting, props, marketing material, etc….All of these things would be very beneficial to our church in its beginning stages.

Mission teams are volunteers from your church who you would send to assist us for a specific period of time. Mission teams may provide assistance in the following areas: evangelism and community outreach events, staffing our preview services, financial support, and other areas of service needing volunteers to assist.

Category:Strategic Ministry Plans