Cultivate: Church Planting Conference 2024

Rhythms & Rituals: Christian Formation at the Edges of Western Culture

Thursday, May 2nd @ 1pm – Saturday, May 4th @ 12pm
St Andrew’s Hall, 6040 Iona Drive, Vancouver, BC

As Western culture grows more secular and Christianity finds itself toward the edges of culture, Canadian church plants are witnessing to God’s love in the world in new ways. This conference will explore how the rhythms and rituals for leadership, worship gatherings, and discipleship formation are being adapted in different contexts. Grounded in missional theology, this conference will highlight how God’s Spirit continues to guide the church through this time of transition.

The keynote speaker will be Dr. Stefan Paas, a church planter and a professor from the Free University of Amsterdam. Canadian church planters will also lead workshops and storytelling sessions during our three days on the UBC campus. This conference is for church planters, researchers, students, congregational leaders, and anyone who is curious about the new things that God is sprouting up in the church.

Conference registration includes the Thursday evening workshop (Wine and Theology with Nelson Boschman) and the Friday evening public lecture with Stefan Paas.

For more information or to register, visit our Eventbrite page.

Please note meals and accommodation are not included in registration. Some options for accommodations at UBC can be found here.


About our Keynote Speaker:

Stefan Paas (1969) received his PhD in Biblical Studies in 1998. His dissertation was published as Creation and Judgement: Creation Texts in Eight-Century Prophets (Brill: Leiden 2003). After a brief career as a high school teacher he worked as a consultant on evangelism for the Christian Reformed Churches in the Netherlands. In 2005 he moved to Amsterdam to work as a church planter. Since 2010 he is a Professor of Missiology and Public Theology at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Theologische Universiteit Utrecht (Netherlands). He is also an extraordinary Professor of Missiology at University of Pretoria (RSA). His field of research is mission in the secular West. Stefan has published on Biblical Studies, Political Theology. Philosophy of Religion, and Missiology. His most recent books are Church Planting in the Secular West: Learning from the European Experience (Eerdmans: Grand Rapids 2016), Pilgrims and Priests: Christian Mission in a Post-Christian Society (SCM: London 2019), and Vrede op aarde: Heil en redding in deze tijd [Peace on Earth: Salvation and redemption in this time] (KokBoekencentrum: Utrecht 2023).

Stefan is married with three children, one daugther-in-law, one grandchild, and one border collie (featuring prominently in his latest book on soteriology).

Pilgrims and Priests: Christian Mission in a Post-Christian Society

A Free Public Lecture with Dr. Stefan Paas

Friday, May 3rd, 2024 @ 7:00pm

Kerrisdale Presbyterian Church, 2733 W 41st Ave, Vancouver


In most Western nations, including Canada, the church has become small. The number of active Christians has dropped under 15% in most countries. In many locations it is even less than that. What does this mean for a missionary religion like Christianity? How is it possible to be ‘missional’ in a context where very few people are interested in ‘God’ issues?

Join us in person and online for a public lecture with Dr. Stefan Paas where he will explore the missional identity and spirituality for Christian minorities in post-Christian contexts.

Drawing on the history of Christianity in the West and on Biblical narratives Dr. Paas will explore the metaphor of ‘priesthood’ as a minority identity par excellence. What does it mean to be the priesthood of your family, neighbourhood, village, city, or country? How will this inspire our faith and mission? We will see how a minority identity is, in fact, profoundly hopeful and full of promises for the calling of Christians in the West.

The evening will begin with storytelling from two leaders of local congregations who are approaching their Christian mission in innovative and creative ways. Dr. Paas will then deliver his lecture, and we will conclude the evening with a question period.

This event will be available online. If you are not in Vancouver you can still join us!

A link will be provided to those who register for this event.

More details and registration can be found on our Eventbrite page.




Cultivate: Missional Church Planting Collective is an initiative from the Centre for Missional Leadership at St Andrew’s Hall. Cultivate strives to convene conversations and equip leaders for starting and sustaining new witnessing communities in their own context.