Dylan Dodson is a pastor, podcaster, and church planter in Raleigh, NC. God has been incredibly faithful to him over the years. Here's how he got started.
Name + Contact Info
Where and what people do you primarily serve?
New City Church in Raleigh NC
How do you serve those people?
When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
Not until after my father died when I was 19. Up until that point, I never really thought or had a desire to go into vocational ministry.
How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
Difficult to answer briefly :). Biggest turning point was a few weeks after my father died, I really felt that pastoring/church planting was what God was leading me to be a part of.
Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
The vision for New City Church is to be actively reaching 50,000 people by 2040. We hope that God would allow us to be part of something like this through the planting of churches, so that collectively, through us and the churches we send out, we are reaching 50,000 together.
What would you do differently if you were starting today?
So many things! I don't think I can answer this briefly!
How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
Since we begin the church planting process a couple of years back, we have built an email list. That and social media is how most people who aren't a part of New City Church stay up to date with what we are doing.
What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
We are part of the Acts 29 church planting network. Community is so important! We have been blessed with some great people as well at New City Church. I've read too many books on pastoring/church planting to really select just a few. I would say always being willing to learn and grow from others is key.
How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
Through Acts 29, as well as local pastor gatherings I am a part of in my area.
What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?
For church planting. A lot of people say they want to do church planting, but aren't willing to submit themselves to a local church and serve faithfully there (everyone wants to skip right to planting a church). I have yet to see someone plant a healthy church where they did not first serve somewhere else. With that, find a network or denomination or somewhere to get trained and assessed. You cannot plant a church on your own.
What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
Realize you don't have it all figured out. Be willing to try new things and fail, and also be willing to take wise counsel. Also don't think (because it isn't true) that there are no other churches where you are planting that don't really love Jesus or “do church” the right way. Learn from those in your area who have been doing ministry there longer than you!
Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
Great question. Church planting is one of those things (like most journeys in life), where if you saw what you would have to go through and deal with before you had to deal with it, it would be really hard to commit to doing it. I would certainly do some things differently if I had to do it all over again, that would hopefully make the process a little sooner. At the end of the day, if people are meeting Jesus as a result of what we are doing, all the difficulty in the world is worth it.