Will Bigger Church Facilities Make People ‘More Merciful and Hospitable’?

Does a bigger church campus and more facilities make church attendees more merciful and hospitable?

Calvary Church, a 3,000-member church in Michigan, thinks so. Pastor Tom Olsson told MLive that his church just spent $28 million to do just that. “We’re trying to do this so people can be more merciful and hospitable; so that people will be more welcoming here,” he said.

The church, which pulls in 4,000 visitors a week, has completed expansion on its 26-acre campus. According to MLive, “The project added about 75,000 square feet, expanding the church facilities from 155,000 square feet to 225,000 square feet. The project also added 157 parking spaces to the campus, bringing the total to 1,706 spaces.”

The churches pews were swapped out for theater-style seats. A prayer garden was added, as was a fellowship hall. An additional meeting area which seats 600 people was also constructed. It includes coffee bars, a kitchen, and buffet tables.

Pastor Olsson said the church raised $23.5 million in pledges from its members to pay for the expansion. It has about $5 million more to go.