Posts Tagged real estate

No Premature Real Estate

Another new component of this church planting model is the avoidance of long-term commitments to real estate. New Way Church will be technically nomadic for the first many years of its existance. This not only reduces costs significantly, but it also helps in a number of other ways. There are a number of different ways of doing this. Primary venues (following recent studies of successful church plants) include movie theaters, school auditoriums, and other community centers. Currently we are looking at the Regal cinema at the Gateway Mall.

New churches often become hyperfocused early on on building programs. The good thing about a building program is that it gives the community a goal. But there are costs that come with this goal.

First, it is a self-serving goal and so tends to turn a community inward. Second, it locks the church in with regard to worship gathering size far too early. Third, it saps all the financial, emotional and physical energy of the congregation, preventing that energy from being used on more outward-facing programs. Fourth, it creates a long-term burden—in the form of maintenance and sometimes debt service—that not only draws money and energy away from outward-focused programs, but (when debt or additional grants are involved) it robs the congregation of an important sense of self-sufficency, making them into wards of the denomination. Finally, building programs encourage a “work hard today, so eventually everyone can stop working so hard altogether” mentality. The building of a building has no obvious followup goal to inspire and lead a community. Better long-term goals include things that will always need repeating—like sponsoring the planting of daughter churches. (See “Daughtering”, below.)

[This is from the Launch Plan for New Way Church in Austin, TX. Last week: Street to Kitchen. Tomorrow: Marketing Philosophy.]

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Buying a House in Austin

We just faxed in our offer on a house in the Northwest Hills area of Austin, TX.

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Austin Recon 3

Gillian and I are going to Austin Wednesday through Saturday to scout neighborhoods, talk to realtors, look at houses, and plan a new church

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