Throughout COVID-19, we’ve implored churches to look with fresh eyes at their facilities and ask, “In what ways is your church building creating space for ministry impact, and how is it creating a barrier to effective ministry?” With many churches still closed for in-person gatherings—or only open on a limited basis—there may still be a window of time for you to refresh specific areas of your building so that you’re ready to relaunch church for a new season of ministry. But which projects should you tackle on your own, and which ones are better left to the experts?
At Aspen, we often talk about creating places that can be an intentional gift for the community—a beautiful space with no cost of admission where people can find rest. Especially in times of heightened anxiety, spaces that connect people with our Creator and the natural world serve as a respite from stress and frustration, especially in this season of COVID. In the following post, Aspen architects Craig Dobyns, César Espinoza, and Rosie Mitchell share design ideas for ways you can create spaces of rest and respite in your church setting.
Discover the impact Millennials' values, allegiances, and assumptions will have on your church.
Since COVID-19 hit and churches were forced to leave their buildings, Aspen Group has been working to help churches prepare to relaunch. "Some of the key church spaces Aspen focuses on, like worship and gathering spaces, have been empty as Americans have stayed safe at home," says Aspen Group Project Architect Craig Dobyns. "My design attention shifted from how we gather and fellowship as a church body in our buildings, to how our buildings can serve the community that is staying at home. Our buildings are still ministry tools, and churches are in a unique position to reimagine their space, even if temporarily."
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.
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.”
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.
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.
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.
It happens to most churches. You’ve been in the same church building for many years. It was great in the 70s and the 80s, but as your ministries have evolved, your building hasn’t. What worked well when you had adult Sunday School classes or when your children’s ministries didn’t include a large-group worship time, may now be misaligned space. Too often it's the physical space within a church building that defines the type of ministry that occurs. When we miss ministry opportunities because we have a facility misaligned with who we are as a church, it can become a serious stewardship issue.
When Christ Community Church was originally built, Simpsonville, SC, where the church is located, was a rural setting. Today, Simpsonville is a rapidly developing suburb. Streets surrounding the church have become much more heavily travelled, and the increased noise from traffic was making it difficult to hear within the sanctuary during worship services.