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Church Design

Aspen Group Blog

Knowledge to navigate the intersection of church culture, leadership, ministry, and facilities.

Marian V. Liautaud

Marian joined the Aspen team in 2014 as Director of Marketing. In this role, she puts her 20+ years as a writer and editor to work by sharing stories of ministry impact of churches Aspen has built. Marian oversees business development and all communications for Aspen Group.

Blog Feature

Church Culture | Mother's Day

4 Ways to Make Space for Moms at Church

By: Marian V. Liautaud
May 07, 2019

If you’ve got children and teens in your church, you likely have their mothers to thank for bringing them. In Households of Faith, a study produced in partnership with Lutheran Hour Ministries, data finds that mothers—more often than fathers, or any other category of frequent participants in households—are seen as the confidants, providers of support, and drivers of faith formation. They’re also the ones most likely to take the kids to church (79%) and teach kids about the Bible (66%), God’s forgiveness (66%), and religious traditions (72%).

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Blog Feature

Church Design | Culture | Millennials | church building

What Notre Dame’s Fire Reveals About Our Love for Church Buildings

By: Marian V. Liautaud
April 23, 2019

When footage of an inferno engulfing Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris flashed across our news feeds, it felt as if the world collectively gasped. How could this iconic cathedral be at risk of total destruction? What would Paris be without Notre Dame to anchor her? One day later, the fire barely extinguished, $300 million was donated to restore the nearly devastated 800-plus-year-old building. Before the end of the week, donations had reached $1 billion and counting.

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Making Space for Millennials Executive Summary

Making Space for Millennials Executive Summary

Discover the impact Millennials' values, allegiances, and assumptions will have on your church.

Blog Feature

Church Design | children's ministry space | Church Security | Church Safety

How to Create Safe, Secure Children’s Ministry Space

By: Marian V. Liautaud
April 10, 2019

When it comes to designing children’s ministry space, safety and security are the top priorities. “Security is the number one conversation churches want to have with us when we’re discussing a remodel or building project where kids space is addressed,” says Greg Snider, account executive for Aspen Group.

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Blog Feature

Leadership | Ministry

Celebrating 5 Types of Givers in Your Church: How to Inspire Transformational Generosity, Part 2

By: Marian V. Liautaud
March 06, 2019

When Julie Bullock, Senior Generosity Strategy for Generis, guides leaders on how to inspire true, transformational giving in their church, she uses a “ham or eggs” model to illustrate the difference between transactional and transformational giving. Bullock discusses the high cost of output-focused giving. You can read about this in Part 1 of this two-part blog series on inspiring total generosity in your church. Instead of focusing solely on outputs (amounts and/or percentages of giving) when it comes to giving in your church, leaders should focus their people on the heart condition and place of all givers who are exploring and growing in their own discipleship journey. In this post, Bullock identifies five types of givers and how to celebrate generosity as part of their overall discipleship journey.

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Blog Feature

Leadership | Ministry

Ham or Eggs?: How to Inspire Transformational Generosity, Part 1

By: Marian V. Liautaud
February 27, 2019

Julie Bullock, Senior Generosity Strategist for Generis, likes to talk about giving in terms of ham and eggs.  “It’s the notion that when the pig produces the ham, there is a total transformation that happens,” she explains. “The pig is never the same. You can't get the pig back to its original form. For the pig, it was a total commitment.

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Blog Feature

Multisite | New Facilities

5 Tips for Launching New Churches

By: Marian V. Liautaud
February 12, 2019

We hosted a panel discussion about launching multisite churches with three visionary leaders and pastors: Tom Elenbaas, Harbor Churches; Mark Jobe, New Life Community Church; Steve Poe, Northview Church. Each pastor addressed challenges multisite leaders face, what they’ve learned personally since embarking on a multisite strategy, and tips for healthy growth. Here are five practical tips from our conversation:

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Blog Feature

Culture | Millennials

4 Things Millennials Wish the Church Would Be

By: Marian V. Liautaud
January 15, 2019

The mass exodus of Millennials (those born between 1984-2002) from the Christian faith has caused many leaders to wring their hands about the future of the church. Some have answered Millennials’ criticisms that the church is irrelevant and boring by trying to be trendy and hip. But an Aspen/Barna study—Making Space for Millennials—reveals that Millennials may be looking for just the opposite.

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Blog Feature

Leadership

Our Top 5 Reads for Leaders Who Want to Maximize Their Ministry Impact

By: Marian V. Liautaud
December 21, 2018

Throughout 2018, we've published a year's worth of blog posts to help leaders like you maximize your ministry impact. Here are our Top 5 most-read blog posts for 2018:

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Blog Feature

Christmas

Making Space for God with Us

By: Marian V. Liautaud
December 20, 2018

"We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14 From a stable to our sanctuaries, wherever Jesus makes himself known is sacred space. It has been our privilege to partner with churches to make space for Immanuel, "God with us."  

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Blog Feature

Church Design | Project Profiles | Church Construction

Before You Build a Gym at Church, Read This First

By: Marian V. Liautaud
December 12, 2018

Anyone who considers adding a gymnasium to a church construction project or upgrading an existing gym space knows how large of a project it is to tackle. For some churches, building a gymnasium is a massive undertaking that reaps significant ministry rewards. For other churches, however, building a gym is a diversion from God’s plan and a waste of precious resources.

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