Design & Construction

A 5-Step Framework For Constructing a Church Facility

Five key points are involved when a church is ready to embark on a building program.

Gary Zandstra  ·  January 16, 2018

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Often I find myself consulting or giving advice as to what steps a church should take when they are ready to embark on a building program. In general, there are five key points involved in a building project.  Each of those points could be an article, or book unto themselves.

My goal is to introduce to the steps and give you a basic overview of what each step entails. 

Each congregation is unique however by following these steps you can head down the road of building with confidence.


This obvious step is often over looked. As American’s we love to jump to the what.  What are we going to build? 

We really need to spend much more time at the Why?  The why is not just because our ministry is growing and needs space. The why is, what is our DNA, what has God purposed us, this fellowship to do at this moment in time. 

Additionally, what vision has God given us as it relates to what our future ministry will look like.

Brushing over this initial step has led many churches to build something they either didn’t need or ends up not meeting the true needs of their ministry.  I currently am working with a church that is building small.  They average around 800 and are building a 450 seat auditorium.  That means that immediately as they move into the new facility they will be doing multiple services and in essence be packed out with 2 or 3 services.

This church knows its DNA, they don’t feel called to be a mega church, they believe God has called them to impact they neighborhood he has placed them in. 

So they are referring to this first building as an incubator. 

They Plan to grow a vibrant congregation and in 18-24 months spin off 75% of that congregation to a new location just across town.  The 25% that remain at the incubator location will then start fresh, new staff and everything and seek to grow a vibrant church that can be spun off in 18-24 months again leaving 25% at the incubator to do it again and again.

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Gary Zandstra
Gary’s newest venture The Experience gives him the opportunity to help the local church using his vast experience in facilities and production.
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