With churches across the country forced to close their doors to avoid the spread of COVID-19, many pastors and leadership teams have been scrambling to figure out new ways to assemble for worship and fellowship. A church in Kentucky held a worship service in an unused drive-in movie theater, and many others are trying to learn how to livestream for the first time.
In 2015, Aspen Group expanded its territory to design, build, and furnish churches in the Southeast states. Since opening a studio in South Carolina, we’ve completed projects in Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina, with more projects underway in these states as well as a growing number in Florida. Now, to better serve churches, we’ve opened a second studio in the Southeast, located in Florida.
Exponential, the world’s largest church planting conference, has been pushing churches to move beyond multisites and embrace multiplication as a church expansion plan.
In this heightened era of anxiety about active shooters and other safety concerns, churches are increasingly asking how to design ministry space with security in mind.
Editor's Note: Greg Snider and Josh Gregoire of Aspen Group presented a talk to a full room of leaders from across the country at Exponential in Orlando on March 3, 2020 on "3 Myths About Facilities that Keep Church Planters from Multiplying." Their presentation drew heavily from the same content featured in the post below. Based on positive feedback on the content of their talk, we're featuring this post again on our blog in case you missed it in previous weeks. Pastors who are focused on church planting and multiplying often focus on leadership and ministry as the key aspects of launching new churches. But one critical piece is almost always missing from the multiplication plan—a facility strategy.
Church building projects can sometimes create a sustained season of stress for pastors and ministry leaders. Though there’s positive excitement as walls go up and spaces take shape, the change associated with building or renovating a church can leave senior leaders vulnerable to getting stuck and possibly leaving the church once the dust from the construction project has settled.
Since 2014, Aspen Group has supported and partnered with NewThing, a dynamic and growing movement for church planters. NewThing helps leaders, churches, and church planters plant healthy reproducing churches to achieve the Jesus Mission in Acts 1:8, to be his witnesses “in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
What will it take for the church to regain its place in the center of our culture? I posed this question in a panel discussion with three visionary leaders: Tom Elenbaas, Harbor Churches; Mark Jobe, New Life Community Church; and Dave Ferguson, Community Christian Church. (You can see the full conversation here.)
Carl Chinn, a church security writer, researcher, and consultant, has been tracking deadly force incidents at churches since 1999. According to his findings, 2017 was the worst year for church violence with 118 violent deaths reported at houses of worship. Though statistically an active shooter is a low security threat for churches, gun violence is what makes the news and creates a ripple effect of fear among churchgoers.
Creating a vibrant and functional children’s ministry space, while communicating your church’s vision and DNA through it, is no small task. Use these four tips to help you as you start to envision your new design.