This reflection of the recent E4H is from Neil Bassingthwaighte. Neil is the new National Mission Director, and will begin officially in August.

A Fresh Perspective

NMDI recently had the privilege of attending E4H, which was held this year at ACTS. Equip For Harvest (E4H) is a training event for church planters, which has been referred to in the past as a church planting boot camp. I’m not sure what previous E4Hs were like, since I have never attended before; but I have to say, after attending this one, I am anticipating God doing some great things in the future.

Although we probably shouldn’t, we often evaluate training events such as E4H based on attendance or the personality of the instructor. It would be easy to do that with this E4H. There were close to 30 people in attendance, including instructors. There were people from various Evangelical Free Churches, a Baptist or two, a couple of Anglicans and even an entire church planting team of 9 people from Williams Lake, BC. The instructors were great. We were lead by Charlie Worley and his teaching team of Chris Yu, Phil Yung, Steve Sharpe, Lorin Bergen and Bill Taylor.

A Continuing Legacy of Church Planter Training

The content of the teaching was excellent, and was enhanced by the instructors being able to share out of both their triumphs and failures as church planters. A key component of the training was a visit to a church plant, on the Sunday morning, to observe and analyze the effectiveness of the church plant. As good as all those things were; they are not the primary reasons why I am anticipating God doing great things after this E4H.

For me a couple other things stood out as the key highlights. First was the prominent emphasis on disciple making. E4H started with the underlying foundation that we are called to be making disciples who make disciples. Over and over again, we were brought back to this. In fact, one of our instructors even mentioned that we were never called to plant churches, but to make disciples. I deeply appreciated this emphasis, especially as I anticipate my new role as National Mission Director with the EFCC.

One of the things that I believe is imperative for us as the Free Church is to once again be a mission movement that makes disciples who make disciples. At E4H we saw God raising up men and women to be disciple making missionaries in North America. That makes me excited.

Memorable Moment

But the most powerful E4H highlight, for me, came on the final day. Each church planter or team presented their church plant proposal. It became apparent that God had been at work. At the start of the weekend some of the teams didn’t have a clearly defined idea of what God was calling them to.

They just had an interest in church planting.

By the time the final day came, each and every presenter clearly outlined who God was calling them to reach and how they believed God wanted them to accomplish that. The passion and heart that they presented with left everyone with goose bumps. It was clear that the Holy Spirit had been at work, using what had been taught to help shape and mold servants of his.

If this E4H is any indication, the future is bright.

God is up to something. One of the best ways we can join God in what he is doing is to pray for the workers God has and will continue to raise up for the harvest.


The following is from Chris Yu, the church planter behind Mercy City Church (MCC) in Toronto’s inner-city. Chris isn’t just fired-up about his own church plant, but church planting in general, and was a presenter at our recent E4H training event.

I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. ~1 Corinthians 3:6-8

Jesus is truly the Lord of church planting.

Becky moved in to the neighborhood about 2 years ago. She had recently come from Botswana, Africa.  She left behind a troubled life in hopes of starting a new one in Canada.  She ended up in one of the inner-city communities of Toronto.  A believer, she looked for a local church for her and her two sons.  God led them to Mercy City Church.  It was different than any church she had been to before.  It was an unassuming storefront church, intentionally trying to share and live out the Gospel in an incarnational and missional way.  She felt at home immediately and, soon after, began leading a fervent prayer ministry.

She witnessed a mercy based, community focused, loving the lost and marginalized, Gospel preaching, relational disciplemaking, ok with being messy, parish-style church in action.  The more she observed, the more she felt convicted that the vision of MCC was not just needed for Toronto, but even for reaching people in her homeland.  God was already planting a seed…

Over the course of the next year, the conviction grew into a calling to church plant.  “If God calls me, I will go back to my homeland to plant an MCC there.”  Becky felt confident in her revelation, but also secure in the fact that she was settled in Toronto.  God was about to water the seed…  Two months after the calling to plant a church, she receives word that her visa was revoked and she would be deported back to Botswana.  Her family at MCC was devastated, but Becky was surprisingly at peace.  She affirmed that this was the Lord giving her the push she needed to be obedient to her calling.

It is hard to argue with that kind of faith.

The next few months went quickly as she rushed make plans for relocating.  An idea for a mercy based outreach ministry emerged resulting in a plan to start a used clothing store back home.  The church rallied and rummaged their closets to supply Becky the seed clothing to start her business.  At the commissioning service the congregation laid hands on the family and sent them off with a blessing.  Honestly speaking, when Becky left, it was clear she was following a calling to church plant, but we did not expect that to become reality for a few years.

However, God was about to make it grow…

A few months went by and there was only sporadic communication with Becky (the internet is terribly unreliable where she was).  Then, one day we receive word and pictures that blow our minds.  Becky had already planted, almost immediately when she got home!  She rented a storefront like MCC, for $500 Canadian per month.  She operated as a thrift shop during the day and held Bible studies and ministries in the evening for the community.  The pictures of families gathered in the space were like looking at an African MCC!  She had taken the values, mentality, and spirit of MCC and reimagined it in another land.

God was doing something amazing, but there was more.

She also shared that she was teaching people about the Gospel using the EFCC statement of faith that we had sent with her as reference.  Not only that, she had taken that same document and registered the ministry with the local government as an EFCC church!  There was no intention to circumvent any protocols or ignore procedure, just a blessed naivety to plant a church.  We have safeguards and procedures in place for very good reasons.  But every once and while things happen that we might not have planned for that doesn’t get stuck by red tape and instead throws caution to the Spirit.  Amazingly, an untrained, inexperienced, spirit-filled, holy risk-taking, obedient to the Gospel, woman (no disrespect), inadvertently plants MCC’s and EFCC’s first church in Botswana, Africa!

Multiplication was always part of the vision for MCC (if not all church planting).  We just didn’t know how that would look or work. What a reminder that Jesus is always on the move and so is His church.  We now have a little sister church that we can support.  How beautiful and crazy is the reality that an inner city church plant in Toronto, Canada, is connected and finding a way to support another church plant in Botswana, Africa?  God planted the seed, watered it, and made it grow.  All glory goes to Jesus!

(If you can help support Mercy City Church in Toronto and/or Heavenly Mercy Church in Botswana, please contact Rev. Chris Yu at chrisatmcc@gmail.com)



What is E4H?

charlieE4H stands for Equip for Harvest – a Church Planting Boot Camp Learning Experience.

May 13-16
Langley, BC

E4H is designed so that you and your board or leadership team will come away from this training experience better equipped to make disciples, especially through church planting, but also through your existing church ministries.

Presenters include Charley Worley, Lorin Bergen and Chris Yu.

In this training experience you will explore questions like:

  • How do you make and multiply disciples of Jesus through church planting?
  • How do you get from the dream stage to launching that first public service?
  • What does a core team and launch team look like and how do you build the core?
  • What is a disciple-making pathway for my church and how do I develop one?

More details are available on the E4H brochure, visible here.

If you’re interested in church planting in the EFCC, register for E4H today!

As the retiring charlieChurch Planting Catalyst who has served the EFCC in this role for the past five years, it has been my privilege to see God use a relatively small fellowship of churches help plant and launch over 25 new churches serving a variety of people groups, new immigrant groups and places across Canada. Our churches and district associations are taking the Great Commission seriously when it comes to church planting.

The Evangelical Free Church of Canada is discovering that Kingdom expansion through church planting begins by responding to God by taking small steps of faith beginning with prayer (Luke 10:2). It is discovering that people like you and churches like yours can partner together and multiply churches to take the Gospel of Christ to Canada’s streets and neighbourhoods through disciple-making and church planting. The future of church planting is far beyond what we can ever ask or imagine. The question is, will you and your church be part of a movement of church multiplication?

Start your journey of discovery by asking if you believe about church planting what we believe!

  • The EFCC believes that it is the Lord of the harvest that develops and sends church planters into the harvest of people he is preparing across Canada (Luke 10:2).
  • The EFCC believes church planting is the most effective and fruitful means of evangelism and disciple-making this side of heaven.
  • The EFCC has the understanding that Canada desperately needs saturation church planting if every Province and Territory, every people group and population, and every generation and immigrant group will ever be successfully reached with the Gospel message and a local community of believers that worships and serves Jesus.
  • The EFCC believes church planting should be based on making and multiplying disciples of Jesus, and complete discipleship should result in devoted followers of Jesus being sent out to help plant churches.
  • The EFCC believes that not everyone can be a lead church planter, so we actively pray, look for and assess those who are qualified to be part of our growing team of church planters.
  • The EFCC knows that you can’t plant a church alone, so we build systems of support around each planter and planting team including assessment, training and coaching.
  • The EFCC sponsors one or two annual, world-class Church Planting Boot Camps that help equip church planters and church planting teams with the latest and best skills, best practices, best resources and networks to get healthy new churches launched and growing.
  • The EFCC, as an association of self-governing, evangelical churches, is a great family to join. We hold to sound, evangelical doctrine and an emphasis on unity in the essentials, charity in the non-essentials, and Jesus Christ in all things.
  • The EFCC will allow you and your church planting model to be unique to how God is leading you and to whom God is leading you in launching a new church.
  • The EFCC believes that we don’t just want to add new churches, we want to multiply new churches that plant more churches that plant more churches. We don’t want a program to start new churches; we want to launch a movement of exponential church multiplication across Canada and to the ends of the earth.

If this is looks and feels like you, why not take the first step of faith and explore with us how you can become a church planter with the Evangelical Free Church of Canada?


E4H stands for Equip for Harvest – a Church Planting Boot Camp Learning Experience.

It is designed so that you and your board or leadership team will come away from this training experience better equipped to make disciples, especially through church planting, but also through your existing church ministries.
In this training experience you will explore questions like:

  • What is the church and what is church planting?
  • What are the qualifications needed in a church planter?
  • How do you make and multiply disciples of Jesus through church planting?
  • What are your church’s building blocks? (What needs to be in place for health and multiplication?)
  • How do you get from the dream stage to launching that first public service?
  • What does a core team and launch team look like and how do you build the core?
  • What is a disciple-making pathway for my church and how do I develop one?
  • What internal and external systems are needed for a successful church plant?
  • What do I need to know about my church neighborhood and the people we are trying to reach?

The Schedule for E4H:

  • October 23 – 26, 2015
  • Friday, Saturday, and Monday — 9am-5pm
  • Sunday morning visit to a church plant; 2:00pm – 5:00pm class training; 5:00pm – 8:00pm visit Mercy City Church Plant


Where will it be held?

Toronto, Ontario – Mercy City Church facilities, 100 Halsey Avenue – Unit #7, East York, ON M4B 1A9

What time will it be held?

Friday, Saturday, Monday: 9:00am – 5:00pm Eastern Time Zone; Sunday schedule: Visit church plant in the morning; 2:00pm – 5:00pm for class training; 5:00pm – 8:00pm visit Mercy City Church (includes meal) with followup discussion.

How do I prepare?

Read one of the following books: Aubrey Malphurs, The Nuts and Bolts of Church Planting (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2011); Ed Stetzer, Planting Missional Churches (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2006)

What is the cost for registration for the 4-Day E4H Training?

$199 (includes 1 meal, snacks & resources); spouses of church planters are $40

$500 special group rate for 3-5 people from your church or church planting team

What resources will be available?

When you register, you will receive a link to access and download all the Power Point slides used in the E4H experience as well as a folder full of additional church planting resources and recommended links.

What do I need to bring?

Bring your laptop or tablet for personal access to the presentation slides and for in class research. Also, bring your Bible and note taking resources.

What do I do if I have any questions?

Call Charlie Worley, Lead Trainer and Coach, at the EFCC Home Office 1.877.305.3322 (toll free) or 604.513.2183 (PST). You may also email him or text him (call the phone number listed for access information).

Meet Your Trainers and Coaches

Bruce Redmond
E4H_bruceA veteran church planter and church planting leader, Bruce is the Director of Church Planting for the Evangelical Free Church of America Southeast District. Prior to that, he was a Church Planting Missionary and the Director of Church Planting in the Rocky Mountain District (EFCA). Bruce has also been a Sonlife Ministries trainer and a church health consultant and has served as a youth director, an associate pastor and a senior pastor of a church that daughtered three new churches. He has a passion to see new churches in the USA and Canada intentionally making disciples and reproducing new churches.

Chris Yu
Chris YuChris Yu  is currently the Pastor at Mercy City Church in Toronto. This EFCC Plant is a missional inner city church plant focusing on serving the socially marginalized and disadvantaged people groups living in the community.



Charlie Worley

charlieDr. Charlie Worley is the Church Planting Catalyst for the EFC of Canada. With over 38 years of ministry experience, most of it in church planting leadership, he brings wisdom and knowledge about  church leadership to the #E4H experience.


Download the brochure here!

20150817 E4H brochure