Podcast Episode #68: Rich Birch - Unreasonable Churches

Posted: Jun 12 2017


Rich is one of the early multisite church pioneers. He served on the leadership team of Connexus Community Church in Ontario, a North Point Community Church Strategic Partner. Currently he serves as Operations Pastor at Liquid Church in the suburbs of New Jersey. Rich is married to Christine and lives in Scotch Plains, NJ with their two kids and one dog.




Ninety-four percent of churches are losing ground against the growth of the communities they are in.

1. Unreasonable Fundraising

It is important for leaders to be very clear why the cause is important and why this is important right NOW. When a compelling vision (WHY) connects with an urgent NOW, that will motivate people. People want to see that the leader is “bought in” to the vision.  It is important for leaders to interact and relate to people on a personal (small group) level before they cast the vision for fundraising. 

Understanding the difference between the WHY and the HOW:

The WHY is the “big idea”, the thing that you are passionate about. 

The tactic is not the “why”, it is a method of achieving the WHY.

The thing you are raising money for is ultimately driving the why. The HOW may change, but the WHY should stay the same. 

Stay focused on the WHY. 


2. Unreasonable Selflessness  

Churches have a lifespan.  The church is one generation away from obscurity. Millennial leaders have to be obsess about the next generation (Generation Z). Some things about reaching the next generation may (and should) annoy you.  Church success is about faithfulness to Jesus, not getting butts in the seats.  Our job is not growth, but reaching the lost.


3. Unreasonable Connections: Church of the Highlands

The free market approach to groups allows more people to become group leaders (even unqualified individuals) and build relationships with those individuals as they grow. 

All churches struggle between the tension of CONTROL and GROWTH.  You can have one or the other, but not both.

The original church was built on broken people.  We are all broken people. 

The fastest growing churches have had people invested in a high-quality group experience, where people feel cared for and connected, not about a big show. Great relationships are the driving factor, not a great music and great teaching. 


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