Helping Communities Seek Christ
To people who have practiced religion in a set-apart structure all their lives, and who are careful to demonstrate respect when they do so, Christians without a church building seem irreverent.
Help the community recognize Christ’s worth.
Just as national missionaries serve their people in the way they need to be served—speaking their language and operating within their culture—church buildings communicate the glory of God to the people of South Asia in a way they need to see it. When people see Christ’s house of worship, they begin to respect Him, and the door swings open for them to seek Him.
Give non-Christians more opportunities to seek Christ.
A church building welcomes non-believers. Approaching a believer’s home for a worship service may make some non-Christians feel uncomfortable, but many will view the church building as open to the public and will feel welcome to seek answers and prayer there throughout the week.
Support the discipleship of believers.
Church buildings are hubs of ministry all week long. They help facilitate discipleship activities for the believers and serve as sanctuaries for them to come and pray throughout the week.
Religious Teacher Encounters Church Building
Pachai, a famous religious teacher in GFA pastor Kamal’s village, despised Christianity. When the construction of a church building began in the village, he denounced it.
Meanwhile, Pachai’s wife suffered greatly from frequent ailments. A headache constantly plagued her, she often felt weak, and she struggled with eyesight problems. Her illness weighed heavily on Pachai, and unable to help his wife, he fell into depression.
One day, after the church building was completed, Pachai was traveling toward the market when he noticed the completed church building.
Pachai was desperate to see his wife get better. Though he had hated Christianity, he believed the Christians’ God dwelled in the building.
He approached the church and went inside.
Pastor Kamal listened to Pachai share and then prayed for the distraught man’s wife. Miraculously, the Lord Jesus touched her, and she was gradually healed from all her ailments!
Through the church building and the healing, the Lord worked in Pachai’s heart, and as a result, Pachai came to know Christ.
An Investment in the Lives of Many—for Eternity
In Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and other countries, thousands of congregations don’t have a church building. In order to help pastors disciple these believers and to give more people the opportunity to seek Christ, we need to build more church buildings.
A Small Investment With Lasting Returns
A church building in Asia costs between $10,000 and $40,000. If a church building costs $40,000 to construct and seats 500 people, that means it only costs $80 for each individual it can seat.
More importantly, that church building will continue to bolster ministry in the village for decades.
Why do some church buildings cost only $10,000 while others cost $40,000?
Multiple factors affect the cost of a church building, one of which is the size of the structure. Some of the congregations we’ve built church buildings for have, by God’s grace, quickly outgrown their structure and have needed to build additions. In anticipation of this and to save on the cost of renovation, we’ve started constructing some of our church buildings to seat up to 500 people. Other church buildings, especially in smaller villages, do not need to hold as many people.
Construction expenses—the costs of materials, labor and land, if it isn’t donated—also vary, depending on the region.
Our aim is to use resources as effectively as possible and to construct each church building with quality and an appearance that glorifies Christ.
— a GFA pastor