The Church of God in Illinois is passionate about Church Revitalization as well as Church planting. We are starting new churches around the state and we are bringing new life to established churches around the state. 

If you are interested in starting a new church, please contact Bishop Kemp or refer to the Church of God office of Church Planting:

If your desire is to lead a Revitalization effort for a local church, please refer to the Church of God Department of Health and revitalization:

Church Planters Wanted in Illinois!

We are seeking for men and women to start churches across our state. A variety of approaches may be taken: large launch, mother-daughter churches, home churches, marketplace churches…the model is up to the planter. We offer assessments, coaching, training and resources. The State Office has resources to share with qualified candidates who can raise resources on their own.   Our Passion There is an urgent need for new churches in Illinois! There are major metropolitan areas with little influence of Spirit-filled ministries. While we encourage and support our existing congregations, we are passionate about planting new life-giving churches across our state.   Why plant new churches? Dr. Timothy Keller answers this question: “The vigorous and continual approach to church planting is the only way to guarantee an increase in the number of believers, and is one of the best ways to renew the whole body of Christ.”   We plant churches

  • Because we want to be true to the Biblical mandate
  • Because we want to be true to the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20)
  • Because we want to continually renew the whole body of Christ
  • As an exercise in Kingdom-mindedness   “The single most effective evangelistic methodology under heaven is planting new churches.” (C. Peter Wagner)   “Keeping a new church outwardly focused from the beginning is much easier than trying to refocus an inwardly concerned church.” (Nelson Searcy)   “But in reality, according to an article in Christianity Today, 80 percent of the churches in America that are growing are experiencing transfer growth, not conversion growth. They’re merely “reshuffling the Christian deck.” (Aubrey Malphurs) “If the entire population of more than three hundred million Americans wanted to go to an established church…more than half would be turned away, even if every church held three weekend services.” (Ed Stetzer)   Our Model The Church of God has embraced a renewed passion for starting new churches. Our ACTS Model includes assessment, coaching, training and serving. Interested/potential church planters will be asked to complete the assessment, which will help us determine your preparedness to plant a church. It will ask you some basic questions about your ministry, education and work history, as well as questions about your family and why you are hoping to plant a church. Qualified coaches will be assigned who can assist planters in every capacity of the process. The relationships built will aid you in your initial plant and will provide a source of wisdom and strength that will hopefully continue throughout your ministry. The goal of the training is to provide practical skills in church planting and management. Topics will include building a core launch team, effective marketing, assimilation strategies, budgets and fund raising, and balancing family life with ministry. These events will also be an opportunity for practical learning and building relationships with other church planters. The service aspect of the ACTS model has two components. First, we want to connect your church plant with an established congregation that can support and mentor you and your launch team. Second, we are committed to teaching you to impact your local community in positive ways through service.   For more information about the efforts of the Church of God to plant new churches, see  

In Illinois, we have accepted the significant challenge of planting 8 new churches over the next 2 years.

  Church Planting requires passion

  • Passion for the lost

Matthew 9:36 “When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. (NIV)

  • Passion for a community
“But as he came closer to Jerusalem and saw the city ahead, he began to weep. 42 “How I wish today that you of all people would understand the way to peace. But now it is too late, and peace is hidden from your eyes. 43 Before long your enemies will build ramparts against your walls and encircle you and close in on you from every side. 44 They will crush you into the ground, and your children with you. Your enemies will not leave a single stone in place, because you did not recognize it when God visited you
.”  Luke 19:41-44 (NLT)

  “It’s not enough for Christians merely to recognize that the world isn’t what it ought to be and that people are suffering in ways they shouldn’t have to suffer.” Instead, our “sorrow and indignation” should prompt us to act in ways that “subvert” that brokenness.” (Stetzer)   “You must have a clear sense of calling before you enter ministry. Being a called man is a lonely job, and many times you feel like God has abandoned you in your ministry. Ministry is more than hard. Ministry is impossible. And unless we have a fire inside our bones compelling us, we simply will not survive. Pastoral ministry is a calling, not a career. It is not a job you pursue.” (Darren Patrick)  

Let’s make it more difficult for the people of Illinois to go to hell!

Nelson Searcy: “Church planting is an all or nothing venture. You can’t just partially commit. You have to fully commit.” Jesus planted the first church on earth with a group of hoodlums who wouldn’t be let inside the doors of most churches today.” Preston Sprinkle: (Charis: God’s Scandalous Love for Us)   Our Terrain Some areas in which churches are needed are:  

City                                         Population     Current Number of Church of God Churches
Bloomington/Normal:           169,572                                1
Decatur:                                     74,010                                0
DeKalb:                                       44,054                                1
Moline:                                        42,685                               0
Peoria:                                       115,828                               1
Quincy:                                        40,805                               0
Rockford:                                  149,120                               0
Springfield (capital):                116,809                               0
St. Louis suburbs:
Belleville:                                     43,032                               0
Collinsville:                                  24,880                               1
Edwardsville:                              24,293                               0
Fairview Heights:                       17,087                               0
O’Fallon:                                      29,069                               0
If you prefer a smaller population area in which to plant, please consider:
City:                                        Population
Mattoon                                      18,555
Effingham                                  12, 604
Danville                                       33,027
Jacksonville                                 19,446

Freeport                                      25,638   Your Response

If you are interested in exploring the idea of helping to start a new church in Illinois, please contact Bishop Kemp at

Thank you for considering church planting in Illinois. If you wish to contribute to the efforts to launch new churches across our state, you may contribute here.