I’ve recently come to hate church buildings. I’ve made my peace with the people, just not the building. There is no other business on the planet that could justify a couple thousand square feet that are really only used ten percent of the time (or less). Does anyone else see the problem here? Most of the churches I’ve attended have faced budget crisis after budget crisis, never seem to have money in their mercy funds and preach sermon after sermon about the importance of giving.
And then there’s this building, this huge building, that is open from 9 to noon on a Sunday, and has office hours three days a week (during which only three rooms are in use) and all of this space. All of this SPACE that isn’t being used.
I’m not really sure what the solution is for most churches. Ours is thinking of becoming a community center, offering budgeting and parenting classes, devoting a room to donating/distributing food and clothing, offering English as a second language courses and maybe even a daycare. They’re thinking about building an expansion, but first they want to fully utilize the room they have.
Honestly? I’d rather have the community center first and have it just happen to host the church, not the other way around. I think community is the key.
It all goes back to the idea of being responsible with what we have and accountable to the people that provide it. People give money to the church wanting it to really mean something to someone, they don’t do it just to hold the space.
*note: this doesn’t apply to old, beautiful church buildings that are tourist attractions. Those transcend my disdain by being generally awesome and also an important part of a country’s culture