You may want to find out more about Christian Schwarz and his ministry by going to the International Natural Church Development site.
For those interested in attending training seminars in the U.S. go to ChurchSmart Resources.
Natural Church Development
Natural Church Development is about releasing the potential that God has already implanted in our lives. Based on the research of more than 40,000 churches around the world, NCD describes universal principles that are applicable regardless of culture, denomination, background, or personal style. Instead of traditional approaches that attempt to imitate the practices of other successful churches, the NCD system takes proven abstract principles and applies them to individual church contexts. NCD research looks at four distinct categories of churches in relation to the quality of the churches and the quantitative growth in worship attendance. Not every growing church is also a qualitatively "good" church.
- NCD focuses on increasing the quality of a church rather than on the numbers in a church. This emphasis on church health has proven to be key in ongoing growth and multiplication.
- Central to NCD is the all by itself principle found in healthy churches around the world: How can this God-given growth potential be released?
- In every level of church life, NCD encourages creativity, authenticity, and diversity. Rather than selling a specific church model, or imitating the practices of other successful churches, NCD helps Christians and churches to discover and develop their individuality.
- NCD assists believers in rediscovering central biblical concepts and relating them to their everyday lives. Only those success factors that pass the "Bible check" are incorporated into NCD tools.
Churches that have completed three or more NCD surveys have increased their average growth rate by 51 percent between the first and third survey. We plant, we water. God gives the increase.
Church leaders find NCD helpful because it...
- reminds them that God brings the growth, and it’s their role to partner with Him, not generate the growth themselves.
- helps them focus on principles, not programs.
- provides a regular and accurate snapshot of a church’s health.
- outlines a process for improving quality.
- helps leaders focus on essential growth values.
- provides concrete input for developing or refining vision.
- helps direct limited resources effectively.
- confirms long-held beliefs through extensive international research.