NAMB’s 2022 highlights Send Network church planting gains, compassion ministry expansion

By Brandon Elrod

ALPHARETTA, Ga. – Southern Baptists and the North American Mission Board (NAMB) had a record-setting church planting year in 2022 as Send Network entered its next phase of ministry during Vance Pitman’s first year as president of NAMB’s church planting arm.

The total number of churches planted increased for the second consecutive year in 2022 as Southern Baptists added 1,018 new congregations: 735 church plants, 201 affiliations and 82 new campuses. Church plant numbers grew by 25 percent from 2021.

A record-setting 216 church planting missionaries attended Send Network’s Orientation on Nov. 1-3 at the North American Mission Board (NAMB) in Alpharetta, Ga. The previous record was set during the March 2022 Orientation. NAMB photo

Send Relief, the compassion ministry arm for Southern Baptists, also hosted more than 4,800 volunteers in several cities across North America during the Serve Tour. Through hundreds of projects coordinated with Send Relief by Southern Baptist state conventions, associations and churches, more than 17,000 people were served and 363 people made professions of faith in Christ.

For the fifth time in six years, Southern Baptists set a new record high for gifts to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering® by donating $68.9 million to support the efforts of missionaries throughout North America.

Along with these highlights, NAMB also facilitated ministry around the world through chaplaincy, supported evangelistic efforts across North America and supported church replanting efforts.

Volunteers with the Send Relief Serve Tour in Dayton, Ohio, measure and cut lumber for a construction project that built homes for vulnerable children and families. Send Relief photo

Send Network

In addition to the rise in total number of Southern Baptist church plants in 2022, Send Network’s orientation for new church planting missionaries set consecutive records during its spring and fall sessions as a total 381 missionaries were trained and equipped for their church planting journey during orientation.

Pitman officially began serving as Send Network’s president in March of this year, and in the fall, Send Network announced a new set of values, new leadership and the launch of the Send Network Español website. These changes will fuel Southern Baptist church planting efforts across North America as Send Network churches plant churches “everywhere for everyone” in the coming years.

Top row, left to right: Vance Pitman, Travis Ogle, Felix Cabrera. Bottom row, left to right: Matt Carter, Michael Crawford, Bryan Loritts. Send Network graphic

GuideStone Financial Services partnered with NAMB to provide retirement plans and insurance to Send Network church planters as they enter the mission field and launch their churches.

NAMB and several different Southern Baptist state conventions—like California, North Carolina, Nevada and Arkansas, among others—announced the launch of Send Network state partnerships in 2022. NAMB works with state conventions regardless of whether there is an official Send Network agreement in place, but these agreements open the door for Send Network’s resources, training, coaching and care to be more readily available to church planting missionaries.

To read more about the North American Mission Board’s 2022 highlights, read more.


Published December 14, 2022

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Brandon Elrod

Brandon Elrod writes for the North American Mission Board.