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Church Design

Aspen Group Blog

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

Blog Feature

Church Design | Project Profiles | Church Construction

Should Your Church Build a Gym?

By: Marian V. Liautaud
November 06, 2019

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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Blog Feature

Church Design | church facilities

3 Reasons Why Your Church May Be Ready for a Makeover

By: Derek DeGroot
October 02, 2019

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.

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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 | Church Construction | Renovations

When Your Community Changes: How One Rural Church Renovated in Response to Development

By: Marian V. Liautaud
September 25, 2019

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.

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Blog Feature

Church Design | Events | Managing Facilities

Building a Special Needs Ministry at Church

By: Marian V. Liautaud
August 27, 2019

When Phil Heller became Lead Pastor at White River Christian Church (WRCC) in Noblesville, Indiana, in 2006, he introduced the staff and congregation to his then five-year-old son, Cade. Precocious and full of energy, Cade also brought with him the challenges of Down syndrome, a genetic condition affecting nearly 6,000 new babies every year in the United States.

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Blog Feature

Church Design | Culture | Millennials

Rest for the Weary: 4 Ways Your Church Can Be a Place of Respite

By: Derek DeGroot
August 21, 2019

In today’s world, we are constantly connected. Whether it’s Wi-Fi on planes and trains, or Bluetooth-enabled cars, or even waterproof devices that allow us to check e-mails in the shower, people are wired—and weary. Based on an Aspen/Barna study, the next generation is looking for a place to rest from their highly plugged in, fragmented lives. The church may be the perfect place for them to find it.

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Blog Feature

Church Design | church facilities | Church Culture

How Better Sightlines from the Pastor to the People Makes for Better Preaching

By: Marian V. Liautaud
August 15, 2019

Orland Park Christian Reformed Church in Orland Park, Illinois, was built in 1970. Over the years, pastors have experienced several physical barriers that inhibited the worship experience. In the sanctuary, there was a disconnect between the pastor and the congregation because of the positioning of the existing worship platform, which was too high and not wheelchair accessible.

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Blog Feature

Church Design | church facilities

When Your Church Is Portable: 5 Ways to Create Effective Ministry Space

By: Shannon Jirik
August 07, 2019

Churches are popping up in schools, community centers, and warehouses. They’re meeting in movie theaters, coffee shops, and even comedy clubs. While many churches plant roots in permanent facilities, churches often start out mobile and borrow or rent space that's primarily used for another purpose.

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Blog Feature

Church Design | children's ministry space

Design Challenge: How to Improve Traffic Flow and Security in Kids’ Ministry Space

By: Marian V. Liautaud
July 24, 2019

South Harbor Church, one of five Harbor Churches in the Grand Rapids, MI, area, was planted in 2011. The facility was outdated, and their kids’ ministries were spread out in various places throughout the building, making it difficult for parents with multiple-age kids to drop off and pick them up easily. “Consolidating kids to one area of the building is a common challenge for many of the churches we’re designing now,” says Rosie Mitchell, a project designer for Aspen Group. “When nursery, preschool and elementary rooms are located in various or far parts of the building, this makes it very difficult for parents with multiple ages to navigate the building.”

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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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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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