What a great line as we ponder the future of ministry and church facilities. The “Attractional ” model of ministry , or Seeker-Sensitive model as some would call it, has already seen it’s momentum peak.
The last 20 years it’s been about attracting people to your facilities with programs and performances, a boomer or “Broadcast Age” phenomenon. In this Digital Age, the future belongs to new ministry and facility models that create “connection and engagement” says my friend Rex Miller, author of Millennium Matrix and the keynote speaker today. I’m at the WFX Conference here in Indianapolis. A conference for all aspects of worship facility design, equipping, and construction.
To prepare our ministries for the Digital Age, Rex suggests we must develop new skills like storytelling, podcasting, citizen journalism, and social networking. To support such skills we must take our facility design inspiration from places like:
- Children’s museums
- Town Squares
- Community Centers
- Barnes and Nobles
- and Lifetime Fitness Centers.
The kinds of places facilitating:
Why Kinko’s…they’re about equipping people to get stuff done. And if the church is to connect with a generation not only comfortable, but demanding to be involved, we must create space that helps equip them to do so. Kinko’s gets it as the following commercial communicates so well:
Another friend and Cornerstone Knowledge Network partner Michael Trent, from Third Place Consulting, was vibrating to a similar beat in his break-out session this morning. Michael helps churches create effective connecting spaces for ministry. Michael challenged that we must learn to use our church real estate much more effectively. We must create connecting spaces relevant to the environment we are in. For example, a church in a college community installed a laundromat and cafe space for students to come hang out, and connect. What a great idea.
But when we use our neat and tidy church space more intensely by inviting the community in, it will start looking…well, used. As Michael challenged:
God wants His churches dirty but His people spotless.