What If...? (six years later)

----- I first wrote this on June 15, 2006. -----


What if it was a goal of our church to launch one new "community impact center" every year?

What if "community impact center" (hereafter CIC) was just a fancy name for a new way of thinking about church?

What if these CICs were launched in areas that most needed to experience the new life brought by Jesus (read: impoverished areas; high crime areas; etc.)?

What if a major part of the DNA of every CIC was that it would launch a new CIC somewhere else within its first three years?

What if that was possible because we unleashed 75-100 people to launch a CIC, and they committed to begin the process of launching a new one as soon as they had 300 regular participants?

What if we could launch an autonomous CIC in Muskegon for less than $500,000?


What if that CIC included a building which housed a community activity center that was open ever day and could serve as a third place for the surrounding neighborhood?

What if that CIC included a building which housed a gathering space which could comfortably seat 150-200 for an EPIC worship gathering?

What if once the CIC regularly had 150 people attending worship gatherings, it launched a new gathering. (and of course at 300 launched a third gathering but began planning for a new launch to which it would commit 50-75 people)?

What if every time a CIC multiplied, Calvary underwrote 50% of the cost (25% for third generation; 15% for fourth)?

What if every CIC was staffed by no less than 2 full-time ministers who were supported by the initial partners and the initial $500,000 investment?

What if these two full-time ministers were released to do nothing but invest in the lives of the people in the neighborhood and prepare one weekly worship gathering?

What if everything else that needed to be done was done by volunteers?

What if we could buy property and build a two-story building that would do all this for $200,000? and use the other $300,000 to furnish necessary equipment and invest in ministry staff salaries?

What if the initial 75 partners represented 25 families that averaged $40,000 incomes?

What if they all tithed?

What if the annual operating budget of the CIC, from the get-go was no less than $100,000 annually (plus the initial investment)?

What if this financial situation was sufficient to bring all the above ideas to fruition?

What if the initial partners did more than just tithed?

What if one of these CICs was launched every year?

What if every new CIC resulted in 10 new disciples ever year?

What if every CIC launched a new CIC every five years?

What if every CIC touched the lives of 500 people in a neighborhood?

What if after five years, there were six new CICs in West Michigan resulting in 240 new disciples and over 3,000 touched lives?

What if after fifteen years, there were 42 new CICs resulting in over 2,000 new disciples and over 20,000 lives touched?

probably couldn't happen.

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