The Household Evangelistic Project is a new approach to church growth based on the Early Church model of the extended Christian household. Jesus Christ often spoke outdoor and indoors to smaller groups of listeners. A good example is Jesus at the home of Simon the Pharisee in Luke 7:36-38, "When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them."
Households are intended to be satellites of the local church that trains and nourishes Christians. Ideally households are mandated to divide and double their membership every two years. According to the late Archbishop Terence Finlay (1937-2017) the Archbishop of Toronto, they are intended to be a model of "relational evangelism." The Household of Faith is an ideal vehicle for home-based parish evangelism.✞
The development group in the Diocese of Toronto prepared an internet manual that may be used as a guide for parishes who choose to participate in this evangelistic project. The history of the project and its philosophical underpinnings are outlined by the preparation group. Some of the original impetus came simply from the felt need to better equip parishes for evangelism. Consideration of the possible consequences of the serious decline in traditional church attendance all over the Western Mainline Churches lent a sense of urgency in developing contingency plans for the provision of "churches without buildings."✞