In my last blog I challenged churches to think about what sort of building projects they should be taking on and the primary motivation behind the dream. In this blog, I want to provide just a few basic pointers based on an assumption that meeting Sunday needs remains an important element of the building project and a primary driver. This is not to contradict myself but to give some practical guidance, benchmarking against other Church building projects.
This was the subject of an interesting conversation I had with our pastor a year or so ago. The Church was planted 17 years ago, since then we have met in homes and moved around from venue to venue in our market town, renting all sorts of spaces: Costa for our Alpha courses, the youth centre for our parent & toddler group, school halls, Town Hall, gyms, conference centres and dance studios for our larger gatherings; we’ve tried everything and as we grow are running out of options. Each venue has its limitations, each has benefits. We don’t have the liability of our own building with the burden of the associated running costs and management needs, on the other hand, we don’t have the benefit of a resource and a hub we can call our own from which to serve our community.
I woke with a heavy heart this morning having heard yesterday about the pending sale of a building that has been a resource for telling people about Jesus for the last 50 years. Bulstrode Park, home to WEC, an international mission agency is a magnificent country estate in Bucks which has resourced the work of WEC as a UK hub. In that time it has been home to many families and individuals as they have gone about their God-given call to preach the good news of Jesus across the nations of the world and provided a resource base for all sorts of mission activities.