Monday, December 18, 2006

this past week our staff traveled to dallas, texas to take a look at some youth centers that other churches have built. if you don’t know, at vineyard we are in the planning stages of building a “youth center” that is adjacent to our property.

during the trip we found that our hearts for ministry resounded best with the folks at fellowship church (ed young’s church). the biggest surprise was that they once had the basketball courts, video games and climbing wall but in the last year took those “features” our of their facility partly because of the lack of interest but more because of the segregation that occurred with students.

inspired by starbucks ceo’s book “pour your heart into it” i’ve tried to take a third place strategy into our design of our facility. the whole idea of third place is that people (or students) have two definite places. first, home then school. the third place concept tries to make an environment that becomes a default place of identity for students. nothing sounds better to me than making our facility a “third place” for students.

i think our entire design focus could be summed up by the statement that we want to create a space not a place. the “if you build it they will come” approach sucks, is shallow and doesn’t work. we want to create a space that god can move in and where true life transformation happens.

you can see my vibe board created from the best elements on our trip by clicking here.

this trip also gave our staff (pete, alton and myself) a chance to get to know each other better and i am honored to work with these guys. they have tons of wisdom and a great heart for building a prevailing student ministry. gary shirk also went along (vcc’s executive pastor). his direction helped solidify the space not place line of thinking and he has an incredible about of wisdom when it comes to “doing church” right. justin, our designer is great! he will be able to put flesh to our bones of thinking. i’m excited about this team.

i would love to hear your thoughts... email them to me!

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