You are on page 1of 21

:: for the glory of God and the good of Fort Worth

:: coming January 2010 ::
The city church | 0


Intro p.2 Budget p.12

Fort Worth p.3 Partners p.13

Vision p.4 Involvement p.14

Basics p.5 Appendix A: Fort Worth
Fact Sources p.15
Strategy p.6
Appendix B: Fort Worth
Doctrine p.7-8 Zip Codes p.16

Timelin e p.9 Appendix C: Acts 29 Assessment
Results p.17-19
FAQ’s p.10-11

the city church | 1
:: INTRO ::

Thanks for your interest in The City Church, a new church community coming to downtown Fort
Worth and to neighborhoods across the city over the course of 2010! In 2008 we started asking
the question, “what would it look like if Christians in the heart of Fort Worth LIVED AS the
church, instead of just GOING TO a church?” The simple answer was that it would look
“different.” That summer we began walking through the process of church planting, and found
ourselves surrounded by supportive individuals, churches, and organizations. We completed an
extensive church plant training and assessment and with Acts 29, a missional church planting
network of over 200 churches around the world, who approved us as church planters. God
seemed to be moving us in this direction, at times in spite of our own ideas and comfort level!

Finally, in the spring of 2009 God’s leading became undeniable: we were supposed to plant a
church. It was supposed to be in the fast-growing, largely unchurched population of downtown
Fort Worth, and it was supposed to happen soon. Some of the stories and so-called
“coincidences” that have confirmed this movement of God have truly amazed to us. So here we
find ourselves, admittedly a little anxious, but excited, expectant, humbled, prayerful, and
knowing that we’re on the brink of something great that God’s doing.

What exactly will The City Church look like? This prospectus explains some aspects of this
“different” church – our vision, mission, values, goals, and the groundwork we’re laying. But
planning and vision are only half of the process at best. The next steps involve believers, who
are passionate about God’s church and who are passionate about this great city and its people,
banding together and taking bold steps as we live out God’s age-old mission of redemption and
reconciliation. We are excited as we look forward to living out that vision, and we hope that you
will join this great endeavor! Thank you in advance for your time, prayers, and consideration.
We look forward to seeing what unique part you’ll play in The City Church.

For the glory of God and the good of Fort Worth,

Ben Connelly, planting pastor
On behalf of The City Church leadership team

Ben and Jess met when Ben was a youth pastor in Waco during their
undergrad years at Baylor. He hired her to be a summer intern, and
three years after her start date, they married. Except for his
Baylor years, Ben has spent his whole life in and around Fort Worth.
He earned Masters degrees from Dallas Seminary and has just under a
decade of ministry experience. Jess is a “transplant” from Omaha, Nebraska, and is working
on a Masters in Marriage and Family Counseling at Southwestern Seminary. During down time,
they both enjoy snow skiing (as often as possible), good conversation with folks, music, and
movies. They’re excited to see what God has in store for The City Church!

The city church | 2

When we started exploring the world of church planting, “strategic cities” emerged as a recurring
key term. Culture is created, populations are dense, and diversity thrives in cities. Cities are the
most strategic place for the gospel. So we pulled out the U.S. map and looked for a growing city
where people need Jesus. We were fairly open to go anywhere (we love the mountains, so of
course we thought we’d land in Denver!), but as we researched and prayed, we discovered we
already live in the perfect location*:
• Fort Worth is the fastest growing large city (pop. 500,000+) in the U.S., with a
population increase of 25% between 2000 and 2007.
• In 2008 Fort Worth’s population passed the 700,000 mark, and is projected to reach over
one million by 2030.
• The average U.S. church size is about 250 people. Just to keep up with the population
growth over the past eight years, Fort Worth would need 600 new churches!
• The DFW metroplex is the second-fastest growing metropolitan area in the U.S, with a
projected population of 10.1 million by 2040 (in 2000, it was only 5.2 million).
• 74% of people in the DFW metroplex do not attend church on Sundays, and in Fort
Worth, only 52% affiliate themselves with any religion.
• Only 25% of churches are located in urban settings, like downtown Fort Worth.
• Over 5,000 new living units are currently being built along the West 7th St. corridor into
downtown Fort Worth/Sundance Square, with another 5,000+ units planned northeast of
downtown. A total of over 10,000 new living units are headed downtown, whose
target audience is post-college single and young married professionals.
• Excluding this growth, over 80,000 people live within three miles of downtown Fort
Worth, with a minimal presence of evangelical, Bible-preaching churches.

Fort Worth is among the most strategic cities in the nation right now! And we love Fort Worth
(except the August heat); it offers a great arts culture, a strong economy and job base
prompting growth, and a substantial college-aged population, including TCU, TCC, and Texas
Wesleyan. Fort Worth is our home. And a huge need for a city-loving church exists right here.

At the same time, our great, growing, thriving city is broken. Here are a few examples:
• 20,000 refugees from 45 different ethnicities live in Fort Worth.
• 8,000 people in Fort Worth need nursing home care but are unable to afford it.
• 4,000-5,000 people are homeless in Tarrant County (61% of those are women and
• At least 17 strip clubs operate in Fort Worth, plus at least one prostitution ring,
employing hundreds of women in the sex industry.
• The Fort Worth Federal Correctional Institution holds 1,815 inmates, plus we have four
major jails, one juvenile center, and numerous half-way houses.
• 1 of every 6 males and 1 of every 4 females in Fort Worth are sexually abused
before age 18.
• 200-300 gangs exist in Fort Worth, which together have 5,000-6,000 members.

Bottom line, Fort Worth needs another church because God has been on a mission for all of
history, redeeming his people back to Himself. And he does this, in part, through the church.
There are broken, hurting people who need the gospel, and who need to be restored to their
Creator. And there are more of them moving here every day.
[*See appendix A for sources]

the city church | 3
:: VISION ::

The City Church might look different than any church you’ve ever heard of. But not “different just
to be different.” Instead, in dreaming, praying, researching, and planning The City Church, our
continual haunting question was “what would it look like if a group of believers in Fort Worth
lived as the church, rather than just going to a church?” As we scoured Scripture to answer that
question, we realized a few striking things*:

• The mission of the church is the mission of God: as God sent Jesus into the world, so
we exist as a community, seeking the redemption of God’s people as he sends us into
the world as well (Matt 28:18-20; John 20:21; Acts 1:8; 1Pet 2:9).
• The early church was less a “formal institution” meeting weekly, and more a people living
out their faith and values in daily life (Acts 2:42-47; 4:32-37; 5:42; James 1:22-25).
• While there was strong leadership, there wasn’t a model of “clergy” doing work which
“lay people” received – every person worked for the good of the church’s mission (Rom
12:4-8; 1Cor 12; Pet 4:10; 2Tim 2:1-2; 40 “one another” passages in NT).
• The early church trained their people and sent them into ministry, so the church could
live on God’s mission together (Eph 4:11-16; Rom 12:1-2; 1Ths 5:11-22; Heb 3:13).
• The gospel is not just a one-time “switch” from (whatever) to Jesus, but the life of God
flowing into and transforming every aspect of our lives (Rom 12:1-2, 9-21; Eph 4:17-32;
Php 2:12-13; 1Pet 1:14-16).

We found that the church of the Bible looks very different from our 21st-century, American model
of institutional, formal “church!” Plus, if we follow the modern model, we’d likely find ourselves
fighting for the same 15-20% of the population already involved with other great churches in our
city. So we realized that there’s something intriguing about returning to our roots, “being the
church” in a different way – not just to be different, but because we think this return is necessary
for the 80+% of folks who don’t resonate with existing models.

So The City Church is committing to be different; to not just “start another church,” but to live out
gospel intentionality in our lives, words, and deeds. As we do this in daily life and throughout
Fort Worth, we will rely on God but work hard to do amazing things in our communities.

Our name summarizes our mission. Throughout the Bible and history, cities are places of refuge
and safety, of culture, of politics and trade, and of gathering. The Bible calls believers “the light
of the world… a city on a hill” (Matt 5:14). And God describes his future, eternal world as a
perfect, redeemed city.

In the A.D. 300’s, an African bishop called Augustine wrote an enormous book called The City
of God. In addition to defending Christianity against the charges of burning Rome, Augustine
reintroduced the idea from Jeremiah 29:4-7, that Christians are called to live “as a city within a
city.” In other words, God calls us to carry out his mission: actively involving ourselves in, and
seeking the redemption of, the “city of man” (as he called it), where we work, play, and live.
Augustine’s ideals lay the dual foundation on which we want to build our church – for the glory
of God and the good of Fort Worth. But “City of God” as a name sounded both cult-like and
pompous. We don’t want to be either of those, so we settled on “The City.”

[*Many other verses support each point; these are just a few key references each]

the city church | 4
:: BASICS ::

“We exist for the glory of God and the good of Fort Worth”
“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”
- Angels, announcing the incarnation of Christ
Individually and corporately, we exist for God’s glory and purposes (Rom 11:36; 1Cor 10:31).
Individually and corporately, the mission of the believer is to join God’s mission of redeeming
mankind (Jer 29:4-7, Matt 28:18-20; John 20:21). And while that redemption is worldwide, it
starts in our own back yards (Acts 1:8). That’s our purpose. As individuals; as a church
community, that’s our mission: we exist for the glory of God and the good of Fort Worth.

As we strive toward our mission, our values will help us stay on track, and will serve as the
unifying DNA of our body. The City Church will be shaped by these values, based on Acts 2:
• Biblical Truth – “And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching…” (2:42)
• Authentic Relationships – “…and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread… And
all who believed were together and had all things in common…” (2:42, 44)
• Responsive Spirituality – “…And the prayers. And awe came upon every soul… they
received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God…” (2:42-43, 46-47)
• Generous Selflessness – “…And they were selling all their possessions and
belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need…” (2:45)
• Missional Lives – “…having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their
number day by day those who were being saved.” (7:46)
More on our values, the ministry philosophy which stems from them, and practical examples of
what each will mean for day-to-day life in The City Church will be available soon at

We don’t care about numbers, but we do care about lives and souls. We have a bold vision for
Fort Worth. So to help us measure that vision, by 2015 we aim to…
• Have at least one thriving Village in each of the 12 zip codes* in and around
downtown Fort Worth, at least one within walking distance of every living unit in
downtown and the W. 7th St. corridor, and several on university/college campuses.
• See impacting, life-changing ministry happening in over 5,000 lives in Fort Worth as
our people engage neighbors, friends, and family for Christ – even if those people never
set foot in our weekend All-Church Gatherings.
• Be regularly involved in 10 local missions organizations, plus be regularly displaying
God’s redemption to the world by beautifying, fixing, blessing, and serving our city.
• Be actively involved as a church with at least one strategic, unreached location
globally, plus be regularly sending our people out to fulfill God’s mandate for mission.
• Have planted at least one church in a strategic area of Fort Worth/Tarrant County.

[*See Appendix B for zip code details]

the city church | 5

As you might expect, the unique vision of The City Church will cause our day-to-day structure to
look a little different than most churches. Here’s a glimpse into how we will live out our mission,
as “one church, in many locations, being the church and coming together to celebrate.”

ONE CHURCH: The local church is called to be a unified community on mission,
loving our neighbors and engaging our city for God. In The City, that means we
all work together, living out our values and pressing together toward the glory of
God and the good of Fort Worth.

IN MANY LOCATIONS: If the church gathers in one place for an hour each week,
then there’s only one group of neighbors, and one area of the city for this mission
to happen. What if, instead of coming together in one place every week, the
primary venue for church life happened in various “Villages,” or intentional
communities meeting in homes, coffee shops, and bars/pubs in strategic parts
the city? Then we would have multiple sets of neighbors, and every Village has a
“focus area” of Fort Worth to engage and restore.

BEING THE CHURCH: While every Village will take on its own personality
depending on who’s involved in it, the basic idea is that everyone in The City will
find a Village near your home, as it best fits your personality and schedule.
Villages will be intergenerational, because natural community is
intergenerational, and because older and younger people can learn much from
each other. In these Villages, we’ll do what the church did in Acts 2: we’ll share a
meal together, talk about life, spend some time in biblical encouragement, pray
for each other, and meet each others’ needs as they arise. On a regular basis,
each Village will vary from its usual structure and spend our weekly time serving
our community together, carrying out local mission. The hope is that as
relationships deepen, your Village will become good friends, and will naturally “do
life together” outside your weekly meeting as well.

AND COMING TOGETHER TO CELEBRATE: Realizing there is unity and beauty
when the entire church body gathers, what if all the Villages come together a few
weekends each month for “family celebrations” – for worship, preaching,
communion, and celebrating God’s and his work in our lives? But since regular
“church life” happens in your weekly Village, what if these All-Church Gatherings
never occur every weekend, but instead we always take at least one weekend a
month to “love our city”? What if we, say, throw a BBQ for our neighbors that
weekend – not “evangelizing them,” but simply building a relationship with them?

“different,” but it fits the model of church described in The Bible; it embodies the
incarnational/missional life of Christ; it seems to make sense. In addition and as
needs arise within the body, we’ll hold seminars, zone gatherings, care/recovery,
church events, and studies, but only occasionally and secondary to the simple
“Village  All-Church Gathering  mission” structure that shapes The City
Church. It looks different; it may even look “weird.” But it’s an experiment we
hope you’re willing to try, as we take bold steps to seek the glory of God and the
good of Fort Worth together.

the city church | 6

The following statements are a brief overview of our core beliefs. See for
a full doctrinal statement, including the biblical references on which we’ve built our doctrine.

REGARDING GOD… We believe in God, the Lord of all that is, who exists without beginning and
without end for all eternity. We believe that God is a singular Being, in whom exist three distinct,
unique and separate Persons, known as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each fully God,
cooperating as one in the work of God. We believe that God is self-existent, self-sufficient, free,
unified, timeless, perfect, unchanging, the definition of emotion, all-knowing, all-present, true,
faithful, wise, good, righteous, just, jealous, merciful, gracious, patient, love, and beautiful. We
believe that God the Father is the Creator, Sustainer, Righteous Judge, Merciful Reconciler, and
the One to whom all things bring glory; and that his sovereign, self-glorifying work extends over
spiritual beings, physical creation, salvation, evil, and mankind’s relative freedom.

REGARDING JESUS CHRIST… We believe that God the Son, Jesus the Christ, has eternally co-
existed as God, and is fully God and fully man in one person; and that he humbled himself to
fulfill the purpose of God and the salvation of God’s people. We believe that Jesus is God’s
utmost revelation of himself, and serves as the example for mankind, miraculous healer, sinless
sacrifice and redeemer, and continual mediator/forgiver. We believe that Jesus was conceived
by the Holy Spirit, born of a fully-human virgin, and that he had a human body, mind, soul, and
emotions, but though tempted, was without sin. We believe Jesus died as an atoning substitute
for human sin; that he was crucified, buried, and physically resurrected; that he ascended to
heaven, will physically come again, and exists eternally in glorified, perfected human form.

REGARDING THE HOLY SPIRIT… We believe that the God the Spirit has eternally co-existed as
God, and is the active presence of God in the world, especially in the lives of believers. We
believe the Spirit carries out God’s work of regeneration, empowerment, santification,
conviction, assurance, guidance, and illumination, and gives to believers various gifts, to be
used for the good of the church. We believe that it is possible for all these gifts listed in Scripture
to exist until the return of Christ, so long as they are not contrary to God’s character and
revelation and are used within the guidelines and purposes of Scripture. We believe that the
Spirit seals and indwells every believer at the moment of their salvation, and thus every believer
is permanently filled with the Spirit, and no further filling is necessary.

REGARDING GOD’S REVELATION… We believe that while humans will never be able to fully
comprehend God in this life, God makes his existence known to all persons generally, through
his creation, providence, history, and conscience, and that these revelations are sufficient to
reveal God’s existence and condemn mankind. We believe that God has specifically revealed
himself to some persons, through the incarnation of Christ, the Bible, and occasionally
supernatural occurrences and miracles, and that God’s specific revelation is necessary for
knowing the gospel, maintaining spiritual life, and knowing God’s revealed will. We believe the
66 books of the Old and New Testaments are inspired by God, are inerrant and authoritative,
and are sufficient and able to be understood for salvation, and for trusting and obeying God.

REGARDING CREATION… We believe that everything other than God (whether physical,
spiritual, or temporal) was created by the Triune God; that God created all things out of nothing
and according to its own kind; and that creation was originally very good. We believe that God
created everything for his glory, actively sustains all he created, and while sin has hindered its
fullest extent, that all creation still reflects God and fulfills God’s plan. We believe that angels are
innumerable created spiritual beings; that some remained obedient to God, to praise and glorify
him and to carry out God’s work; and that others (including Satan who is the head of demons)

the city church | 7
sinned against God and now oppose and hinder God’s work, existing within God’s sovereignty
and without the ability to be redeemed.

REGARDING HUMANITY… We believe that God created humans in his image and likeness, for
his glory, as the pinnacle of his created activity; that humans are unique from all other creation;
that God created mankind equally, regardless of race, gender, economic or marital status, or
age; and that the uniquenesses of males and females are the closest earthly reflection of the
Trinity: equal in personhood, value, and importance, but differing in roles and authority in the
family and the church. We believe that the fullness of God’s image was seen most clearly in the
person of Jesus Christ; and that there is a single nature within humans, and thus sin and the
gospel both affect our whole being. We believe physical death is the painful result of living in a
fallen world, but that in death there is hope for believers, as their soul is united with Christ.

REGARDING SIN… We believe that sin is the lack of conformity to God; that it was ushered into
the world by Satan at the fall of man as part of God’s sovereign plan and will, and that everyone
is born with an imputed sin and inherited corruption, which rightfully separates us from God for
eternity. This depravity leaves us unable to do anything good, please God, or earn our way back
to eternal relationship with God. We believe that all sin is equal in God’s eyes; that some sins
have more harmful consequences in our lives; that all sins can be forgiven in Christ, other than
the rejection of Christ as the means of one’s salvation. We believe that sin is commonly realized
when we experience temptation; and that sin in the lives of Christians disrupts our fellowship
with God and may incur God’s loving discipline.

REGARDING SALVATION… We believe that salvation is the work of God giving us faith in Christ,
and that there is nothing we can do to earn it. We believe that God chose whom he would save
before creation, according to his sovereign good pleasure; and that he enacts salvation in the
lives of his people; but that our response is an active choice from our perspective. We believe
that at the moment of salvation, all guilt and punishment from sin are removed and we are
adopted into God’s family, a relationship that is eternally secure for all whose conversion is
authentic. We believe that from the moment of salvation, one’s life is spent in the process of
sanctification, as God works in us to make us more like Christ; and that this process is only
completed when we experience glorification, in the perfect eternal presence of God.

REGARDING THE CHURCH… We believe that the universal church is made up of all God’s
people throughout all the world and history, and that the visible manifestation of this has always
been local gatherings of believers. We believe the church glorifies God as all its people work
together for his mission, and that the activities of the church include preaching the Bible, the
symbolic ordinances of baptism and communion, worship, discipleship, reconciling care/
discipline, and mission/service to the surrounding community and to the ends of the earth. We
believe that the biblical offices for church leadership are elders (biblically qualified men who
lovingly rule the overall church body and who preach/teach) and deacons (biblically qualified
men and women who oversee specific aspects and ministries as directed by the elders).

REGARDING THE FUTURE… We believe that God the Son will return to earth in a person, visible,
bodily form, that this event could occur at any point and will result in the judgment of
nonbelievers, the final reward of believers, and the ushering in of God’s eternal kingdom. We
believe that God will judge unbelievers according to their works, which will condemn them; and
will judge believers according to our identity in Christ, which surpasses our sinful works. We
believe that hell is a place of conscious punishment for all unbelievers, where they will exist for
all eternity revealing God’s justice and wrath against sin, that heaven is a conscious place
where God makes his presence known to believers, and that after the final judgment, God will
renew the heavens and the earth, where believers will spend eternity in the presence of God.

the city church | 8

2008 2009 2010
July – Ben & Jess May – Ben transitions to full- Jan 8-9 – Village leaders’
commit to pursue time work toward The retreat (details TBA)
church planting City Church Jan 24 – OFFICIAL
LAUNCH! All-Church
Nov – Ben & Jess assessed/ July 19 – Prayer/brainstorming Gathering
approved by Acts 29 dinner
church planting network Late Jan – Villages begin
Aug 23 – Prayer/brainstorming meeting across
dinner Fort Worth
Feb 21 – All-Church
Sept 13 – Pre-launch Village Gathering
begins meeting weekly
Sept 20 –Vision gathering Mar 13-19 – Global Mission
Mar 28 – All-Church
Oct 10-13 – Fall Roadtrip Gathering
Oct 18 – Vision gathering
Apr 25 – All-Church
Nov 15 – Vision gathering Gathering

Nov TBD – Thanksgiving May 1-2 – Mayfest
local mission
May 23 – All-Church
Dec 13 – Vision gathering Gathering

Dec TBD – Year-end worship/ June 27 – All-Church
prayer/vision night Gathering
[*All times & dates subject to
change; July 4 wknd – Zone Parties
for times, locations, and details]
July 18 – All-Church

Aug 22 – All-Church

Sept 12 – More regular All-
Church Gatherings

• Local missions
• Prayer gatherings
• Church & zone
• …and more
[**More regular All-Church Gatherings might begin as early
as summer 2010, depending on several factors in The City]

the city church | 9
:: F.A.Q.’S ::

These are some questions people have asked as we move toward starting The City. If you have
further questions, please email, or contact Ben Connelly at 817.229.6150

The long answer to this question is that during the inception of The City Church, a team of Acts
29 church planters will serve as an advisory team, coaching and overseeing this new endeavor.
In a more day-to-day role, Ben Connelly will head up the launch, serving as planting pastor. As
early as possible in the process, we will build a leadership team of committed men and women
to lead alongside Ben, and in the early months of The City’s history, potential elders and
deacons will begin a several-month training/assessment process, and other leaders (for
Villages, kids, students, worship, etc.) will be developed as interest and need arises.

But the short answer to the question is “YOU!” Scripture calls the entire body to partner
together, using our time, gifts, talents, and passions for the good of God’s church. Thus, rather
than “hire out” needs, everyone in The City must live out your unique design and get involved!

The City Church is launching in three phases: First, after two prayer/brainstorming dinners in the
summer of 2009, we’ll welcome anyone interested to our “pre-launch Village,” which will meet
weekly at the home of Matt and Angie Hudson (6436 Curzon Ave, 76116) throughout the fall,
beginning September 13. Then, as we officially launch the church, multiple Villages (which will
always be the venue for life in The City) will begin meeting downtown and strategically across
the city in January 2010. We’ll also hold monthly All-Church Gatherings in downtown Fort Worth
throughout the spring. Finally, we’ll most likely move to more regular (but never every week) All-
Church Gatherings in September 2010, although we might start these earlier in the year,
depending on how the church body is doing. These Gatherings’ exact location is still up in the
air, but we are currently working to secure a venue in the heart of Sundance Square for these
Sunday evening gatherings. Stay up to date at (website coming soon).

WHAT does a typical week look like in the life of the church?
This question’s answer is two-fold, following the steps of our launch phases: beginning in
January 2010, you’ll be involved in a Village near your home, where you’ll carry out the life of
the church: a meal together, biblical encouragement, prayer, living on mission together, etc.
Once a month, we’ll gather the entire church together on a Sunday evening for worship,
confession, teaching, communion, and celebrating what God is doing in our church family. After
a few months, these All-Church Gatherings will become more regular, but we’ll always take one
of every four/five weeks to “go and be the church” instead of gather together. Other than that,
we might host a seminar, movie, zone gathering, or event once a month, and a few classes,
retreats, or groups as needed. But we’re aiming for a simple structure, freeing you up to spend
time with God, family, and friends, and to love your neighbors and serve your community.

Every Village will “adopt” a local mission, but possibilities are endless regarding what that
mission is. Our hope is that your Village will find a mission close to you – maybe a park needs
cleaning up or a school needs repainting. You’re also free to partner with existing ministries
throughout Fort Worth, or to dream and develop your own idea for a needed mission. And of
course, the most obvious way to engage your people is to meet folks in your neighborhood,
gym, work, kids’ sports teams, etc. That’s living on mission just as much as building a house is!

the city church | 10
Since weekly “church” in The City take place in homes, we are developing a trained, approved
“Kid City” team: two members will devote themselves to your Village for a year, and will join you
each week, leading a “kid-friendly” lesson on the same topic or verses that the adults are
covering that week. It’s free, and it’s better than childcare – it’s kids ministry in your home!
Junior High, High School, and university-aged students will have two options: they can either
join an age-specific Village, which will meet each week like other Villages, or can join a multi-
generational Village, interacting and growing with the rest of the body. Additionally, The City will
host student- and college-specific events throughout the year. We are currently in the process of
developing further info on kids and students, and we welcome input as we work out details.

Yes. While some Villages will meet strategically across Fort Worth, we are asking people to
invest their lives into our primary mission field of West 7th St, downtown Fort Worth, and the
surrounding neighborhoods. Ben and Jess have committed to buy a home near downtown
during the coming months, and invite you to consider this bold move as well. Additionally, The
City Church is working to partner with Apartment Life, a ministry that helps cover rent, and our
goal is to have City Church partners living in many major apartment, townhome, and condo
complexes as possible in the next few years, adopting your complex as your mission field.

Page 3 of this prospectus explains some of the stats about downtown Fort Worth’s
development, in addition to the thriving arts culture and proximity to TCU, TWU, and TCC’s new
Trinity River campus. But downtown Fort Worth is a beautiful paradox of wealth/development
vs. need/poverty, with many of the largest homeless and impoverished populations sitting on the
edge of the new growth in downtown. And many non-profit ministries find their homes within a
few miles of downtown. We have a perfect opportunity to teach and boldly live out God’s
mission, and The City is excited to help meet the dire needs for both these populations,
providing a strong, strategic, engaging, impacting church for the unique, diverse people.

the city church | 11
:: BUDGET** ::

Starting a new church is no small endeavor! As we ask for partnership and commitment from
friends, family, and others with a passion for seeing Christ’s name spread across Fort Worth,
here is an overview of our 2009-2012 budget needs:

• Personnel: $24,200 • Personnel: $120,400
• Communication: $1,400 • Worship: $6,000
• Training/equipping: $2,000 • Communication: $3,600
• Vision casting/events: $800 • Training/equipping: $13,200
• Start-up expenses $9,450 • Missions/planting: $27,000
• Logistics/unexpected: $2,600 • Community/events: $26,400
$40,450 • NextGen ministries: $15,600
• Logistics/unexpected: $46,200
• Personnel: $70,200 • Personnel: $150,600
• Worship: $3,400 • Worship: $7,200
• Communication: $4,600 • Communication: $3,600
• Training/equipping: $9,600 • Training/equipping: $14,400
• Missions/planting: $16,800 • Missions/planting: $36,000
• Community/events: $8,400 • Community/events: $39,600
• NextGen ministries: $7,200 • NextGen ministries: $21,000
• Start-up expenses: $8,000 • Logistics/unexpected: $58,200
• Logistics/unexpected: $23,800 $324,600
TOTAL 2009-2012 BUDGET: $769,450

Of the total budget, we aim to raise $363,850 (47%). Our goal is that reliance on outside
funding will be completely gone by the beginning of 2013, through the faithfulness of our people
giving generously toward our work together. Here’s a breakdown of how this will look over the
next few years (conservative projection of giving per person vs. needed funding, per year):

(Jan of ea. yr.) (TX avg) (= funding) % FUNDING
2009 0 $0 $40,450 0% / 100%
2010 40 (80 by Sept) $41,600 $110,400 23% / 77%
2011 120 $124,800 $127,600 49% / 51%
2012 230 $239,200 $85,400 74% / 26%
2013 340 $353,600 $0 100% / 0%

Through the grace of God and the generosity of individuals and organizations (see next page),
we have already received $27,700 in actual funds or in commitments over the next three years.
> With $27,700 raised/pledged, our remaining need is $336,150* <
[*Funding statistics last updated 06/02/09]
[**Detailed budget, updated funding stats, etc. available upon request:]

the city church | 12

To help us get off the ground with prayer, funding, training, personal involvement, oversight, and
more, we’re ecstatic and honored to be in ongoing discussion with the following confirmed or
potential partners, who have expressed interest in being involved in The City Church:

(Flower CONVENTION (Hurst, TX)
Mound, TX) OF TEXAS www.carestea
www.thevillage (Dallas, TX)

As pastor in a four-year-old church plant, Barry Keldie was part of our Acts 29
assessment team. Providence will provide funding and some of the directional
oversight of The City as we develop elders/leaders.

NorthWood Church’s GlocalNet missions ministry has planted over 100 churches
around the world in the past 15 years. NorthWood is partnering with us by
providing coaching, funding and church planting relationships.

ACTS 29 NETWORK* (Seattle, WA) –
A network of 150+ pastors across the US, Acts 29 is committed to planting
biblical, missional churches in strategic cities around the world. Acts 29 assessed
and approved us as planters, and is providing coaching support.

VISION360 (Orlando, FL) –
A multi-denominational church planting hub, Vision360 DFW is providing support,
specifically by connecting us with local Christian business leaders, churches, and
organizations who will also come alongside our efforts.

YOU! – While we are indescribably grateful for these organizations, The City
Church won’t take shape without strong commitment from incredible individuals
like you! Several folks have already committed prayer, involvement, and personal
funding; please see the next page for info on how you can join in too!

[*Denotes confirmed partner]

the city church | 13

On this last page, we are asking you to get involved with us. Directly or indirectly, there are
three significant ways you can join the vision:
• PRAYER – Whether you’re considering direct involvement in The City Church or not,
we’ll put aside all pride and beg you, please pray for our new church, for our mission,
vision, development, and leadership over the next several months, as well as for our city
and the people we will engage. We need hundreds of people praying with us, against
sin, pride, and division, and that God will do his work (not ours!) in reaching his people.
We will send monthly prayer updates to our email list, and will make updates available at as well.

• GET INVOLVED – Hopefully this brochure has explained this clearly, but The City Church
is a people, so we’re looking for passionate individuals to join the mission for the glory of
God and the good of Fort Worth. We’re not looking for folks to come for a short time and
then leave, but to join a mission, commit to do life together, and engage our city. If you
resonate with this vision, and if God is moving you to join us, we’ll help you find your
perfect place to get involved. If nothing else, come to a vision gathering or consider
joining our pre-launch Village in Fall 2009. And if The City’s not for you, but you know
someone who might want to be involved, please help us get to know them.

• FUNDING – The previous pages included a snapshot of The City’s budget over the first
years. Even with backing from partner organizations, we have a long way to go to reach
our goal of raising $363,850! We’re humbly asking you to consider supporting us in one
of three ways: in a one-time donation or in commitments for monthly or annual
contributions. Your gift is tax-deductible, and you can contribute in one of two ways:
either fill out the attached card and send your check to the address below, or donate
online at (coming soon)

However you choose to get involved, we very much appreciate your partnership, and your belief
in what God is going to do through The City Church. We can’t do it without you. Thank you!

Will you partner with The City Church as we seek
the glory of God and the good of Fort Worth?
___ I’d like to receive prayers/updates, and commit to praying for
The City each week on this day: _______________
___ I’m interested in being a part of The City, or at least
getting more info, as it takes shape over the next few months.
___ I commit to supporting The City Church (check one)…
___ monthly (Sept 2009- ____ 20___) ___ annually (2009-‘12) ___ with a one time gift
[please note month & year]
in the amount of $__________________ (*details below; all donations tax-deductible;)

Name __________________________________ Email ______________________________
Address __________________________________________________ Apt/Ste # _________
City/St/Zip _________________________________________ Ph # ___________________
[*if supporting us financially, you may (a) donate online at (coming soon) or
(b) make checks payable to “The City Church” PO Box 740919, Fort Worth TX 76147]

the city church | 14


U.S. Census Bureau; North Central Texas Council of Governments; Texas State Data Center;
Hartford Study on Religion in America;; Olson, David T. Ten Fascinating Facts about
the American Church, CD-ROM (2004), The American Church:;
Barna, George. “Church Attendance,” Barna by Topic, 2005, The Barna Group,; The Rooted Church, Fort Worth:; Fort Worth Start Telegram, “Fort Worth population tops
700,000” (June 26, 2008); Fort Worth Texas Magazine, Oct 2008

the city church | 15

76102 – Downtown Fort Worth
76103 – West of downtown (I-30)
76104 – Near Southside/Morningside
76105 – Stop 6/Poly Oversight
76106 – Northside, Diamond Hill, Jarvis
76107 – West of downtown (Como/Westover Hills/West 7th)
76108 – White Settlement area/NAS Base
76109 – TCU, Tanglewood, Bryant Irving area
76110 – 35 South (Ryan Place, Rosemont, Worth Heights)
76111 – Northwest of downtown (I-35/121)
76112 – Far east Fort Worth (Woodhaven, Ryanwood)
76114 – Northwest Fort Worth (River Oaks/Westworth Village)
76115 – South Fort Worth (Greenbriar/Seminary)
76116 – Southwest FW (Western Hills, Ridglea Hills)
76117 – Haltom City
76118 – Richland Hills
76119 – Southeast Fort Worth (Echo Heights, Glencrest)
=17 total

76126 – Benbrook
76132 – Hulen Bend, Mira Vista
76133 – Wedgwood, Candleridge
76134 – Edgecliff Village; Willow Creek

the city church | 16

I. Business Career Interests Inventory
Your Entrepreneurial Attributes Scale Score

Your score on the Entrepreneurial Attributes Scales (EAS) compares you to a general sample of business
professionals. The average score for the general business comparison group is 50. 10 points higher or
lower represents a significant variation from the norm. This means that a score of 60 would put you at the
84th percentile, a 70 at the 98th. A 40 would put you at the 16th percentile and a 30 at the 2nd.

Entrepreneurial Attributes Scale (EAS) 53 All of your BCII
Name: Ben Connelly validity tests indicate
Gender: Male that this test
administration was
Age: 26 valid.
Date of testing: October 22, 2008

If your score is between 45 and 54, this means that your interests and the way you describe yourself are
similar to entrepreneurs to the same extent as most business professionals. Having a score in this
average range does not mean that you lack entrepreneurial interests. Some entrepreneurs have scores in
this range. The best interpretation of a score in the average range is that your interests and self-
description are neither highly similar nor dissimilar to entrepreneurs.

II. Acts 29 Network Official Assessment Outcome
Completed November 2008
Assessment Team: Barry Keldie (Providence Church: Frisco, TX),
David Pinckney (River of Grace Chuch: Concord, NH), Thomas Young
(The Sanctuary Fellowship: Houston, TX), Tyler Powell (Church
Planting Strategist, Acts 29: Seattle, WA)

First, I would like to say that spending time with you and Jessica was one of the highlights of the Boot
Camp for my team. It is always great to see young men with a passion and vision for church planting and
a godly supportive wife on his side. We have been praying for you ever since and I hope the Boot Camp
and assessment was beneficial for you.

Second, the toughest part of our assessment is seeking through objective testing and subjective inter-
views to accurately determine the fitness of a potential planter to succeed. Admittedly, human beings are
not numbers and ministries are not math equations, which certainly makes an occasional erroneous
assessment possible. However, we have proven to be highly successful in our assessments and offer the
following recommendations in hopes of informing and influencing your future ministry decisions.

Recommended with Conditions
We are recommending you as an Acts 29 planter with a few conditions. This means we believe you are
able to lead a church plant with Acts 29, provided you satisfy certain conditions as listed below.
Congratulations, you will now be graduated from “Applicant” to “Candidate” status.

Some of the specific areas we discussed include:
• Choose the city where you will plant your church
• Discern your timeline and put it on paper as a plan
• Figure out what your first year budget is so that you can begin fundraising

the city church | 17
• Read “Biblical Eldership” by Alexander Strauch and complete the attached questionnaire
• Build coaching relationship with experienced Acts 29 pastor to help you as you plant

Ben, we appreciate your vision for God to be glorified through church planting. We encourage you to
spend the next few years of your life developing as a man, a pastor, and a missional leader. We feel that
the residency program at the Austin Stone will provide you with some needed experience and knowledge
that will help you plant your church. We recommend you as an Acts 29 Network planter at this time.
During the next year or so you need to spend a lot of time in prayer and study to find the city God is
calling you to… Most planters who succeed plant in a city they are familiar with and one that matches
their personal demographic. Lead Pastors tend to attract people that are like them as far as life stage,
socio-economic status and education. You should add cities to your prayer list that have people like you.
We are not saying that is where you should go, but you should at least begin praying about them as well.
The other recommendations are steps in helping you plant your church. We look forward to getting to
know you better and seeing what God is going to do through you.

Objective Review From Online Exams
Your EAS score of 53 is below average for church planters and could possibly indicate some discomfort
with risk-taking situations. We like to see scores of 58 and above for church plant lead pastors. While we
are aware there are limitations to this test, we believe it is a useful tool in determining one’s
entrepreneurial aptitude and comfort with taking risks. This doesn’t mean you won’t be successful in
church planting but it means you will need to be aware of this as a potential weakness and seek to push
yourself in this area.

Your personality type is ENTA. ENTA’s are typically given “high church planting potential” due to their
ability to see patterns easily and maintain many tasks at once. ENTA’s are creative thinkers, intellectually
outspoken and can argue both sides of an issue. Your personality type is also confident in his or her
abilities. The theme is innovation. This of course does not “determine” who you are, and you need to
“own” that typology yourself for it to be considered valid.

Furthermore, your DISC analysis indicated that you are a high “I” (Inspire) with a subtype of “D” (Direct).
Certain studies show that “D’s”, particularly when paired with “I”, tend to grow “larger” sized churches
faster than others.


Areas of Strength
You have an obvious passion for church planting and doing ministry. Your wife is also a major asset. To
be partnered with a woman who feels called to ministry herself is a major help. You carry yourself well
and I can see people following you. Your communication skills are good and you’re theologically sound.
Additionally, you like to dream, inspire and innovate. This is essential for church planting. A planter
needs to be able to paint a picture of a movement or church that doesn’t yet exist and get people to invest
time, resources and gifting to it, and I believe this is one of your strengths.

Areas of Growth
Some of your references spoke to some trouble in dealing with authority. While this is normal for church
planters and this is partly due to your call you should work through submission and humility while in your
residency program. You don’t want to plant a church where you have no accountability and build an elder
board of “yes” men. You should also work to gather a core. Your EAS score was low for a church
planter, which means the bigger and stronger your core the better you will do. Guys will a higher EAS
can start with fewer people and do well, while guys who score lower do better with a team of people to
support them. We tell all planters to get as much time preaching as possible. While you have great
potential, you need to get repetitions to sharpen your gift.

Conditions Requiring Completion

the city church | 18
Please begin to work on the conditions below (listed in no particular order). While we have no hard and
fast deadlines here, we expect that all of these conditions could take up to or more than a year to
complete (esp. #2). Once these conditions are met and signed off upon by your assessment team, you
will move from a “Candidate” status to a “Member” status.

• Condition #1 – Join Austin Stone’s residency program and begin studying and planning for your church
plant. [**Changed by assessment team, 01/2009: “secure an A29 trained coach and/or establish an
“externship” relationship with an existing A29 church”; in process]
• Condition #2 – Move to location and gather a core group of 40 people that are committed to your
church plant [*Move completed; core group currently in process].
• Condition #3 – Figure out which city you are going to plant your church in. You should work to decide
this in the next few months if possible. This has to be in place to begin gathering a core group
[*Completed 01/2009].
• Condition #4 – Plan out your year 1 budget. Include your salary and a ministry budget so that your
family will be provided for and your church can be launched well. You should also begin making a list of
all potential fundraising sources and start building relationships with the [*Completed within this
• Condition #5 – Read Biblical Eldership by Alexander Strauch and fill out questionnaire [*Completed

We also recommend you build a relationship with an experienced Acts 29 church planter to coach you
when you plant your church. Finding the city you will plant in will be crucial in deciding who might be able
to help you. You will want to find a coach you can get with in person if at all possible.

Final Remarks
Finally, please know that we love you, and are confident that God has called and gifted you to plant a
church. We are here to serve you, encourage you, and help equip you. Please don’t hesitate to contact
us or give us updates on your progress or to run something by us. We welcome this kind of initiative and
perseverance because we want to celebrate your spiritual growth along the way. In the meantime, we
gladly welcome you to involve yourself in our regional events and national Boot Camps.

It was a privilege to spend time with you and Jessica and we look forward to the growth of God’s
kingdom. Please let us know if you have any questions about this assessment report.

the city church | 19
Ben Connelly’s cell: 817.229.6150
PO Box 470919 | Fort Worth, TX 76147 (website coming July ’09)
The city church | 20