Our church doesn’t stick with any specific discipleship program for very long any more. Most of them are one and done.

We became aware of this challenge back in the in the 1990s, when we adapted the base path model from Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Church. We did it one year and it worked. A lot of people took Classes 101 through 401. So, when we restarted them the next year we expected a similar response and got … crickets.


A big church can use the same program year after year because there’s a big enough stream of new people to go through it.

But in a small church, it doesn’t take long for everyone who’s interested in a specific discipleship program to finish it. And there aren’t enough people coming in every year to replenish the well for the next go ‘round.