Involving the Community in Church Design and Construction
When beginning any church design and construction project, it's vitally important to make sure that your congregation is on board. After all, without them, there would be little need to create a beautiful worship space. Presenting the idea of adding onto or building a new church facility can be a tough sell, especially if you aren't adequately prepared with the how and the why behind the project.
Involving the congregation from the beginning is an excellent way to create buy-in for your new church design and construction project. Here are some tips for making sure that your group feels adequately involved in the project:
Be sure to identify the "why" of the project before you ever discuss plans to fix them. If you are seeking to expand the worship space, be prepared to discuss increases or potential increases in fellowship numbers. If you want to create a space for coffee bars, study areas, and family gatherings , have examples of how they have benefited other churches and how your church can also benefit. Ask your congregation for problems that they have noticed and ways that those problems can be solved. Obviously, not every problem can be addressed, but some can. This allows the congregation to take their place as leaders and owners or their worship space.
Once you've presented the "why," it's time to present the "how." Once you've addressed the concerns of the congregation and a preliminary plan has been agreed upon, it's time to hire a design-build firm. Not involving your build firm in the design process is a pitfall that can lead to budget and time issues. Vanman Architects and Builders work with their clients throughout the whole process and can help you prepare a plan to present to your fellowship.
Use the congregation to drum up support. Use social media to remain open and transparent about the progress of the project. Host dedications and other events that help the community feel involved. Allow both the congregation and the community to have ownership of the worship space and the multipurpose space. Soon, your church will be a symbol of hope, family, and fellowship.