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.
In 2004, religious facility construction was an $8 billion a year industry in the U.S. That's a lot of church buildings. At the same time, other research was emerging that indicated that church attendance and growth had plateaued or was declining. We saw a massive stewardship issue—how could so many churches be renovating and building new facilities and yet not experiencing growth, either in attendance or in spiritual maturity?
Discover the impact Millennials' values, allegiances, and assumptions will have on your church.
Your church has decided it’s ready to renovate or build a new facility. Your next big decision will be to determine who you’ll hire as your church building partner. Many church bylaws and rules of governance dictate a due diligence process that includes soliciting multiple firms with a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) or a Request for Proposal (RFP) as a primary means for comparing building partners.
Mark Jobe, founding pastor of New Life Community Church, a multisite church in Chicago, speaks candidly about how pastors can get stuck and slide into despair, especially in and following seasons of high, ongoing stress. According to Jobe, pastors will frequently opt to leave the church where they’re at in an attempt to get “unstuck.” Moving on, it seems, will help alleviate the stress and internal discomfort they’re experiencing. 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—or plucked!—and possibly leaving the church once the dust from the construction project has settled.
Few things affect the worship experience like audio, video, and lighting (AVL). When Aspen Group designs church space, we work closely with AVL partners to ensure that pastors can preach the word clearly, worship teams can lead church services effectively, and attendees have a meaningful experience at church.
Church architecture and interior design is always evolving. If you’re embarking on a church building project, here are four trends that are hot—and two that are not:
Whatever the churches in your neighborhood look like, stop for a moment, and consider the church that isn’t there. At least, that isn’t there yet. What will it look like? Who will attend? What will its relationship be with the people who live, work, and play in your zip code? How will it be built to reflect the values of those pastoring and attending the community?
Churches that are dedicated to reproducing will experience several ongoing tensions. You can't experience movement without feeling tension. Here are five of the most common pain points for churches that are focused on multiplying: