Acts 29 Network
What is the Acts 29 Network?
The Acts 29 Network is a church networking organization dedicated to the activity of church planting (i.e. establishing new local congregations). It derives its name from the Book of Acts in the New Testament, which has 28 chapters, making Acts 29 the "next chapter" in the history of the church.
The Acts 29 Network was founded in 1998 by Mark Driscoll and David Nicholas. Beginning Sep 17, 2007 with the Raleigh Boot Camp, Acts 29 began using Great Commission Ministries as its mission agency for fundraising and leadership training. Driscoll chose Matt Chandler to become the president of Acts 29 Network in 2012.
He announced plans to keep the network's objectives intact while reorganizing to address the worldwide scope of the organization. He also intends to keep Driscoll on the Board of Directors. The offices and leadership of Acts 29 moved from Mars Hill Church in Seattle to The Village Church in Texas in March 2012.
Other figures active in the early days of the Acts 29 Network included Dr. David Nicholas of Spanish River Church, Boca Raton, Florida; Rick McKinley of Imago Dei Community; the aforementioned Mark Driscoll; and several other non-denominational and Presbyterian church planters.
The network calls itself a "trans-denominational peer to peer network of missional church planting churches" and describes itself as "first Christians, second Evangelicals, third Missional, and fourth Reformed."
The Acts 29 Network has been described as part of the emerging church. However Darrin Patrick, Vice President of Acts 29 has pointed out "bad things" in the emerging church such as "the fascination with deconstructing almost everything while building almost nothing," and "ugly things" such as "conversing about God's Word to the neglect of obeying it, deviating from historical orthodoxy and the lack of clarity regarding issues of theology and sexuality."
The network includes 422 churches on six continents. A number of churches within the network belong to multiple denominations. For example, Christ the King Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, North Carolina is a member of the Presbyterian Church in America, while The Village Church is a member of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Steve Lemke of the New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary cited interactions with Acts 29 instead of local Baptist churches on the part of Pleasant Valley Community Church in Owensboro, Kentucky as a reason they were denied acceptance into the Daviess-McLean Baptist Association, saying, "Those who want to be accepted should make themselves acceptable."
Roger Moran, a former member of the Southern Baptist Convention's Executive Committee and head of the Missouri Baptist Layman’s Association has long criticized Acts 29 on matters of doctrine, vulgarity and drinking. In his view, Acts 29 and other emerging church movements have become a dangerous and deceptive infiltration of Baptist life. Christian Piatt of the Huffington Post has criticized the network for disguising the traditional evangelical agenda of conformity and conversion behind the veneer of the new missional church movement.
"Acts 29 Network" Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (with minor edits), under GFDL.