Prior to COVID, our board of overseers had been prayerfully discussing various plans to improve our facility and launch our next church. Now, in the wake of the spiritual and social upheaval of the past few years, we believe the need for us to step out in faith for the cause of Christ is even more urgent.
God does not call His Church to wait until the storm passes. He calls us to be faithful in the storm, light in the darkness, a city on a hill and a refuge for the weary. He calls us to take part in his work to make all things new.
So after years of prayer and discussion—and after asking our entire congregation to join us in praying at our Vision Night this past May—we believe God is opening a door for us to invest now.
Our goal is to minimize impact to ongoing ministry as much as possible during the construction process. Services will continue to happen each week, but we may need to use a few temporary spaces as rooms get updated. However, we will do whatever it takes to create safe gathering spaces throughout the duration of the project. With kids spaces, we will communicate directly with parents throughout to keep them updated so they feel comfortable.
Our desire for more people to have access to Jesus and those who follow him remains the same as it has always been. The shift in how we accomplish this is what is shifting. We believe that people are more likely to be involved with ministry (particularly midweek) if a church is within 15 minutes of their houses. And, they are more likely to invite their friends to take part in their life groups, kids/students programs, and services if it is nearby. Providing this in a multisite structure provides an efficiency of scale both on ministry planning and financial resources, increased and ongoing support for new campus staff members, and it allows for a larger staff at the time of the launch.
Additionally, COVID has made us aware that any church starting needs to be able to provide an online expression. We can tie in with the online resources that Northshore has made available since 2019.
We analyzed the data of our existing congregation to see where we have concentrations of people who already attend. We are hoping that they will be able to help us launch the new campuses and then help it to grow by inviting their friends and neighbors. Since our initial analysis, we have also discovered that these two areas are some of the fastest growing cities in the greater Seattle area so there is an increasing need for great churches who can help introduce people to the love of Jesus.