We launch Gospel-centered churches and outreach initiatives

Parks to Plants and Our Upcoming Conference: Church in Hard Places

Church in Hard Places Godspeed Event Image

Ten years ago, Summer OFF was an infant. Now it’s giving birth to another ministry: Parks to Plants.

Parks to Plants (P2P) is the Philip Center’s initiative to plant churches near Summer OFF parks. Three goals have always guided Summer OFF:


  • to reach children with the gospel
  • to train the next generation of Christians for a lifetime of outreach
  • to plant churches near Summer OFF parks (if there isn't one already)

West End Community Church was the first of the P2P churches. Now the Philip Center, along with the pastor of West End Community Church, is looking to the next locations.

Which brings us to 20schemes and our upcoming conference. (Is this too many organizations to keep track of? It takes partnerships to plant churches!) 20schemes is a church planting ministry in Scotland whose aim is to plant 20 churches in 20 different schemes (think housing project + town).

20schemes has thought hard and thought well about planting in underserved locations. And not just thought about it — they are doing it. Churches in hard places often share common struggles. So 20schemes works not only to plant churches in hard places but to help others do the same.

On April 14, 2018, the Philip Center, 20schemes and Acts 29 will team up to present “Church in Hard Places.” This one-day conference features Matthew Spandler-Davison (Executive Director of 20schemes) and Andrew Mathieson (Pastor of Lochee Baptist Chapel in Dundee, Scotland) as our speakers. 

Church planting is already hard enough. But when planting in poor neighborhoods — in Scotland, Providence, or in your city — the barriers multiply. Many of these churches will never be self-sustaining. So we need deep biblical conviction for leadership to plant these churches. We need partnerships with churches who know how wisely how to provide resources (they must be well-trained!). And we need to know what evangelism and discipleship looks like in this context.

This is why we are hosting the “Church in Hard Places” conference. As P2P takes its first steps, we want to learn all we can from our older siblings at 20schemes. (And this is why Matthew Spandler-Davison is joining the Philip Center board of directors this year.)

We want to pursue God’s calling well. We want to learn. We want to fruitfully plant churches that display the glory of God. We hope you’ll join us — at the conference, and in planting churches in hard places.


The Church in Hard Places conference will take place on April 14th, 2018, at Godspeed Church in East Providence, RI. Read more and register HERE. We hope to see you there!