Image source: Flickr CC user brett jordan A Tampa Bay church recently did what many larger churches are doing these days: it opened two new branch campuses in other towns. Unlike in the past, however, the lead pastor doesnâ€™t have to travel from church to church and give the odd sermon at a far-flung outpost. Many regular attendees have never seen him in the flesh â€“ and donâ€™t feel they need to. Thatâ€™s because they can watch his message live every Sunday on a 9-by-16 foot screen, when itâ€™s broadcast via satellite.
Image source: Flickr CC user Katrin Weâ€™ve just heard two different stories about congregations that planted churches. The aptly named Church of the Open Door recently started a new church in Vermilion, Ohio. When the congregation went looking for buildings this past summer, an opportunity to buy a former school administrative office seemed to fall from heaven. About 70 families are pleased to report that theyâ€™ll no longer have to drive 20 minutes to their main campus in the next town for Sunday services. By all accounts, their church planting is going well. So far, so good.
Image source: Flickr CC user Ted Sakshaug A few Sundays ago I heard a nice story about how a church found the land where its beautiful buildings now sit. The preacher at the time spotted a â€˜for saleâ€™ sign on the lot while out driving one day. He liked the property so much that he stopped at the house. The owner came out on the porch, and the two men starting haggling. Within a few minutes, the preacher had a deal and shook firmly on it. The manâ€™s gut and strong faith told him it was the right thing to do, even though he wasnâ€™t sure when, or if, his church would ever build there. They did build, decades later. Well, it all worked out.