Is Multisite on the Downslope?

Recently, some high profile multisite churches made the decision to un-multisite. For a variety of reasons, their ministry strategy has shifted from “one church in many locations” to “multiple independent churches,” some even boldly downsizing to one location. 

As I’ve been thinking about those announcements, my fear is that other churches will assume multisite strategy is becoming dated without pausing long enough to answer some critical questions: 

  1. Why did they do it? Do we have the same why that needs to be addressed? 
  2. What were the results? Will we see the same results that they experienced? 

Frankly, when it comes to the high profile churches I alluded to, most of us don’t really know the underlying answer to their why question, and we certainly don’t know the answer to the results question yet. 

And I am aware of some data that’s pretty encouraging when it comes to the effectiveness of multisite strategy. For instance,

  • Of the 100 largest churches in the country, 50 of them are using multisite strategy. 
  • Of the 10 fastest growing churches in the country, nine of them are using multisite strategy. 
  • Leadership Network and Portable Church released a research report last year that indicated multisite churches are growing faster and seeing more faith conversions than even church plants.

So in this episode I connected with Geoff Surratt, pastor and author of The Multisite Revolution, to discuss all of this. Geoff was one of the pioneers of multisite strategy, along with his brother and teammates, at Sea Coast Church in South Carolina. 

In this episode, we covered:

  • An honest perspective on the state of multisite strategy today, it’s effectiveness, what’s working and what’s not, and where the movement is headed
  • 3 questions to ask yourself if you’re considering “un-multisiting”
  • Why too many people have been copying other churches to get into multisite, and why it’s dangerous to just copy them to get out of multisite
  • Also… Geoff shared a rant about a common ministry strategy he said he hasn’t shared publicly anywhere to-date