We need to work together
Recently I shared that I love it when Christians share their ideas and talents with the broader church.
I love it when we work together.
I love it when we share our experiences and learn from each other (the good and the bad).
I love it when we realise that we're not lots of churches, but one church serving one God.
I've been reminded of the benefits of this, and the opportunities for this recently as I've been serving on a team on our church building redevelopment. As far as I know, none of the small team have been involved in a church building redevelopment before. This is the first time for all of us.
As anyone who has been through this type of project before will have discovered, church building projects are complicated. They involve:
- Identifying and communicating with stakeholders;
- Working with local councils;
- Working with the National Trust;
- Working with Diocesan bodies (e.g. the Anglican Property Trust);
- Working with architects, contractors, and heritage consultants;
- Making tricky and sometimes controversial decisions (carpets, chairs, security, etc); and not least of all
- Raising the necessary funds!
Again, as others who've gone through this will acknowledge, it's complex, confusing, stressful and sometimes frustrating.
As I've ridden this wave I've thought "there's got to be an easier way". Surely each church doesn't have to start from scratch?
Church after church bite the bullet and embark on building projects. Surely there's greater scope for learning from one another to save money, make better decisions, improve communication, reduce time and avoid the same mistakes?
When it came to fundraising I chatted with friends from EV Church, St Matts Manly, Crossway Baptist and Crusaders and while this was very helpful, lots of churches might not have these contacts, and besides - fundraising is only one aspect of a big project.
So let me throw it out there - How can we collaborate better and learn from each other?
This principle expands beyond building project. So, in an effort to heed my own call to action, I've recently started a series I hope will be helpful to many churches: 'Selecting a church member database'. You might also be interested in attending an upcoming 'Church Communications Meet-Up'.