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A response to: “Why are we spending so much on a church building?”

A pastor (not at my church) was approached by a couple who were concerned about the cost of a church building project, over $3 million. To be sure, this isn’t an insignficant  amount of money, and concerns about spending money on church buildings aren’t uncommon.

How would you respond to this concern?

Here’s how this pastor responded.

He gently explained that the couple’s house is probably worth around $1 million dollars (Sydney isn’t a cheap place to live!). 4 people live in that house, and most of them are at work or at school for the majority of the week.

He then explained that the church is in daily use by over 500 people every week of the year, and the desire is for this number to continue to grow.

$1 million for 4 people. $3+ million for 500 people (and growing).

This doesn’t mean the ministry benefits don’t need to be carefully articulated – they do. However, comparing the amount of use, and the costs of each facility, it becomes clear that the redevelopment cost (especially in Sydney) is not as out of proportion as it may first appear.

Church follow-up idea: Thank you cards

Here’s an idea my church has been trialling.

The goal is to help connect with people who visit church, but for various reasons may not want to stick around for long after the service. We want to do our best to connect with people who visit, and allow them to explore more of our church after they leave. We also want to hear about their first impressions. Ultimately, it’s about caring for the people God brings along to our church.

To this end, we’ve designed a simple card that we look to hand to guests at the end of the service. The idea isn’t to overwhelm them with information, but to thank them for coming, and to encourage them to visit our website.

Here’s what the card looks like:

Side A

Side B

It’s not too late for your church to design something similar for Easter services!

Keller on how church size impacts volunteer recruitment

Tim Keller:

“The larger the church, the harder it is to recruit volunteers and thus a more well-organized volunteer recruitment process is required. Why is this so? First, the larger the church, the more likely it is that someone you don’t know well will try to recruit you. It is much easier to say no to someone you do not know than to someone you know well. Second, it is easier to feel less personally responsible for the ministries of a large church: “They have lots of people here—they don’t need me.” Therefore, the larger the church, the more well-organized and formal the recruitment of volunteers must be.”

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