We spent part of yesterday at the church having a visioning session/retreat about the future. A developer wants to buy part of our lot. We have 4 acres, but if you drive past the church on the major road, you don't realize what a big lot it sits on. The developer has offered to build us whatever we want on the back part of the lot for ourselves as part of the sale.
Of course, this has all been verbal. We're waiting on a more formal something in writing. We've had interest before, and often people don't follow through, because they have to do all the work.
We were not visioning what we would want to build, although that was a tiny part--but we stayed away from that, because it might not happen. But we spent the afternoon talking about where we are as a church, and where we envision going. It was interesting to me, both for the information and the process.
We began by introducing ourselves by more than our name: how long we've been at the church, what we like, and what we're worried about as we think about the future of this church.
Most of us were worried about dwindling numbers of attendance. I was struck by how many people said, "We've got to get more young people attending."
But what if we don't? Maybe our mission field is midlife and beyond. Maybe that's a growth model we should consider. After all, people with midlife might bring younger people with them. But then again, they might not. And that could be O.K.
We are early in this visioning process. In an ideal world, we wouldn't build a thing before we worked our way through a long, intentional process. It will be interesting to see where it leads us.