When Not to Build: An Architect's Unconventional Wisdom for the Growing Church

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9780801091063: When Not to Build: An Architect's Unconventional Wisdom for the Growing Church

Wise insight on building a church, growing a church, and keeping costs low. For pastors, leaders, and building committees.

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About the Author:

Ray Bowman, a church growth consultant, resides in Larkspur, Colorado. Eddy Hall, a freelance writer and editor who joined Bowman as an associate consultant, lives in Goessel, Kansas. Bowman and Hall are also co-authors of When Not to Borrow, and their articles have appeared in Leadership, Your Church, Ministries Today, and Clergy Journal.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

From Chapter 1: When a suburban Philadelphia congregation asked me to design a thousand-seat sanctuary, that's exactly what I intended to do. They had called me for the usual reasons. Their sanctuary was full and they were running out of educational space. It was time to build.

To determine how best to design their facility, I first met with the church board for four hours on a Saturday morning. Next I spent several days studying the church's ministries, finances, and use of facilities. Then I met with the church-growth committee. Finally, I was sure I had the facts I needed to draft my proposal.

I met with the board again the following Saturday. "What you really need to build," I announced, "is a storage shed."

Had the church invited me a year and a half earlier, I would have designed a thousand-seat sanctuary and cheered them on. "The building will bring more people to Christ," I would have said. "Its beauty will draw you closer to God. People will notice you're here and that you're an important pat of the community."

During thirty years of designing church buildings, I had heard all these claims from pastors and church boards and saw no reason not to accept their assumption that bigger buildings translated into greater ministry. But then my life took a surprising turn that made me look at the church through new eyes and forced me to rethink the conventional wisdom that had guided three decades of work.

...By the time the Philadelphia church asked for my help, I realized that a facility plan intended to maximize ministry could not be created in a vacuum. It had to be developed hand in hand with a ministry plan and a financial plan. All three had to work together.

Because I had looked at the church's facility needs not in isolation but in light of ministry and finances, I had come to a conclusion that was startling, at least to me: A major building program at that time would in all likelihood stop the church's growth and create financial bondage for years to come.

Over the next ten years I went on to consult with scores of churches and learned from each of them. Because I asked facility questions from a new perspective, from the perspective of ministry and outreach, time after time I was forced to admit that some point of conventional wisdom I had embraced as an architect was untrue. Much of this conventional wisdom encouraged churches to build too big, build too soon, or build the wrong kind of building.

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Book Description Baker Publishing Group. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, When Not to Build: An Architect's Unconventional Wisdom for the Growing Church (Expanded ed), Ray Bowman, Eddy Hall, When Not to Build has helped numerous churches find wise and creative solutions to their space problems. The first edition garnered a Recommended Resource Award from Your Church magazine and won favorable reviews: "A useful book for churches that want to build, and a valuable contribution for those that want to focus on developing more effective ministries."--Reformed Review "Will edify any church leader in any phase of church growth." --Bookstore Journal Now this expanded edition takes into account the changing shape of the contemporary church with four new chapters, a new appendix, an added preface, and updated information throughout. In the authors' experience, nine out of ten churches that consider building have a better alternative. When Not to Build helps pastors, church leaders, building committees, and laypeople find those alternatives and avoid unnecessary expense. It also offers practical advice for keeping building costs at a minimum when it is the right time to build, as well as maintaining focus on ministry through a building program. Self-tests are included at the end of each chapter. Bookseller Inventory # B9780801091063

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Book Description Baker Books. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Paperback. 208 pages. Dimensions: 8.4in. x 5.4in. x 0.6in.Wise insight on building a church, growing a church, and keeping costs low. For pastors, leaders, and building committees. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Bookseller Inventory # 9780801091063

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