- Construction began July 2008
- Construction completed Spring 2009
To better align with the needs of their congregation, Living Hope Church in Merrilville, IN decided it was time for some change. Rich in history, this contemporary church with a strong missional focus was misaligned with their current facility. Their small narthex did not provide the connecting space they needed and the exterior of their building did not show the personality and activity of the members.
Their new facility includes an expanded narthex with two distinct lobby spaces on either side that can be closed off for private meetings. One of the spaces features round tables and a serving area to accommodate luncheons and dinners. The opposite side is more intimate with a fireplace, bistro tables and soft seating for a variety of small gatherings and fellowship opportunities.
Half of the spacious gymnasium will be renovated into a dedicated youth center and the other half will be remodeled, but remain a gymnasium. To highlight their rich heritage, the new narthex features traditional vaulted ceilings and the new outdoor canopy has exposed wood. The exterior of the building was also updated using masonry and glass elements.
When the church took the Healthy Church Survey at the beginning of their project, in Visioning, they scored above the national norm, but actively worked at improving the areas where they scored lower. At their request, they re-took the survey at the start of construction. They scored even higher. By following the Aspen Group process and dedicating themselves to continual improvement, Living Hope Church is better equipped to serve their community.