Words of Wisdom from Otto Wegner

Two nights ago I had the privilege of spending the night at the home of Otto Wegner in Center City Philadelphia. Otto is a man I admire so much and I really enjoy gleaning from his years of church planting and ministry experience. With that said, here’s a few things I took away from the conversation we had over breakfast:

  • We shouldn’t measure success by size, sound and speed but by community transformation.
  • When a person who is illiterate and without a job comes to the altar and commits their life to Christ, they’ll wake-up the next morning with a new life in Christ, but they still can’t read and don’t have a job.
  • We need to celebrate steps of faith by ministries here in America just as we celebrate those same acts oversees on the mission field.
  • The method is the Message. How we communicate the Message speaks volumes to our confidence in it.
  • Too often we are not confident in the Message enough, so we feel a need to compensate for it.
  • (One of his mainstay quotes) “The presence of God’s people guarantees the presence of God.”
  • As the salt of the earth we can’t just sit there and wait for people to realize their thirsty.
  • We shouldn’t just plant churches for the sake of church planting – it’s about community transformation.
  • Pay with time for things that appreciate. Pay with cash for things that depreciate.


I’m in Carlisle, PA at our District Conference Center for some meetings this week. Here are some of the best quotes from yesterday (and they’re pretty good!)…enjoy!!

  • “Every community or society becomes what it affirms and celebrates.” –Otto Wegner
  • “It’s the presence of God’s people that guarantees the presence of God.” -Otto Wegner
  • “Strong leaders make strong churches.” -Bob Novak
  • (My personal favorite) “Brian [Bolt’s] not a man, he’s an experience.”Dave Martin
  • “The number one problem in ministry is insecurity…you have to remember, it’s not about you.” –David Thomas
  • “A person’s leadership will never rise above his ability to receive criticism.” -David Thomas
  • “You know where people go to church? Where they want to go to church.” -David Thomas
  • “The person that is good for excuses, is good for little else.” -Benjamin Franklin (no, he wasn’t actually there!)
  • “Sometimes God will offend your mind to expose your heart.” -David Thomas

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