First Church

First Church
Demotte, IN
Campaign Type:
Building Expansion
Campaign Theme:
Campaign Financial Commitments:

Client Challenge

How does a cutting-edge new senior pastor do 21st-century ministry in a 1950s building . . . with great effort. How does a congregation, whose inception predates their community, relocate to a brand-new facility . . . very carefully. These were the realities for Pastor John Hill when he arrived on the scene at First Church in Demotte, Indiana, in 2014. The lay leaders of the church already had a major building proposal “on the drawing board” and John jumped right in, providing visionary pastoral leadership to move the project forward.

CGS Response

Somewhat surprisingly, John’s first decision was whether or not to maintain the consulting relationship with CGS which had already been established by the Church Board. In prior ministries, John had some negative experiences with other church campaign consultants. After a “heart-to-heart” talk with his CGS Consultant, John decided to stay the course. Working together, John and CGS developed an intentional plan to gain deep and wide ownership of the project before the official launch of their capital campaign. This was an essential first step given the magnitude of the project and the deep, traditional history of the congregation.

Campaign Outcome

The effects of John’s strong, pastoral leadership, careful pre-campaign planning, (guided by CGS) and a congregation united behind a compelling vision to reach the lost in their community, was nothing short of miraculous. When campaign results were announced on Celebration Sunday, their congregation, which only averaged 350 in attendance, had committed the astounding amount of $5.8M toward the project. More importantly, according to John, they did so with barely a loss of any individual families – it was not only a huge financial success, but they had “safe passage” as well.