7 Myths About Portable Churches – Debunked!

Jan 22, 2020

Want to know the truth about portable churches?

Churches are meeting everywhere –In schools, hotel lobbies, cinema houses, parks and even casinos. Such portable churches benefit from reduced costs, greater flexibility and better engagement with the community.

However, certain misconceptions prevent churches from embracing portability, and its many advantages, with open arms. If you’re planning to launch a church, and are wondering if the portable church model is for you – this is just the post you need to read today! Here are seven common myths about “churches without buildings” – debunked:

Myth: A church without a building is not a “real” church

The idea that a church can exist outside of a permanent building, is an appalling one for many Christians. After all, the imagery of a whitewashed chapel with a steeple is deeply ingrained in our minds!

However, the church is the WHO, and not the WHERE! We have heard it all before – “the church is the people, not the building.” Your church, therefore, needs to be defined by its love for Jesus and each other, its heart for the unreached and its ministry in the community.

Do you really want your church’s identity to be limited to the space you occupy? A portable location for your church means that people cannot identify the church with a building. A mobile church is compelled to put the people first.

Myth: Setting up and tearing down is hard work

Rolling in, setting up, tearing down, rolling out – this weekly exercise by volunteers is what keeps any portable church running smoothly. Without the right equipment, structure and motivation, however, installing and packing up can be tiring and frustrating.

To avoid volunteer burnout, you need regular encouragement, a dash of creativity, and the right equipment and transportation solutions! Systems that are designed around your specific church needs will ensure that setting up and tearing down is efficient and hassle-free for your volunteers.

In fact, a portable church environment fosters a healthy volunteer culture. As more people come together to serve alongside, deeper relationships are formed, and a much-needed core team of volunteers emerges.

Myth: You can’t own the mission without owning the building

There is an unhealthy tendency in many of our churches to interlink their buildings with their vision and mission. In fact, the building sometimes has the danger of becoming the vision of the church!

The church building is only a tool for your church to execute its mission and vision. Click To Tweet With no building upkeep and maintenance to care about, the church can fully focus on people, relationships, ministry and community – all the stuff that really makes up the vision and mission of a God-centered church.

Myth: Portability is only for small, startup churches

Launching in a portable venue is the most practical option for a new church plant. After all, zeroing down on a permanent building during a church’s formative years can be a costly mistake.

However, the portable church model is not just a stepping stone for churches on the road to permanency. Portability is helping churches of all sizes save time and money, channel their resources toward ministry and outreach, and engage and invite the community.

In fact, Rolling Hills Baptist Church actually sold their 20-acre campus and moved to a movie theater –  to be better embedded in the community!

Myth: Mobile churches attract fewer new people

Some think that portable churches can send confusing signals to those who might be looking for a “real” church experience. However, statistics paint a widely different picture. According to Lifeway research, new churches that meet in public places experience 42-49% increased attendance than others.

Buildings don't grow churches, effective ministry does. Click To Tweet Unchurched people feel more comfortable attending gatherings in casual spaces like schools, theaters, gyms, and hotel lobbies. A traditional church setup, on the other hand, can be a roadblock for those who are new to the church context, or have been burnt by a previous experience.

Portable churches, therefore, offer a huge advantage in helping you reach the community and the unreached.

Myth: It is difficult to launch in a facility that is not designed to be a church

Churches that meet in restaurants, movie theaters, schools and gyms have to go out of their way to make the space work for them. Isn’t it simpler to move into a building that is designed to be a church?

No, not really! The advantages of the portable church model clearly outweigh any extra effort needed to transform a rented venue. In fact, a portable church setup offers volunteers unique opportunities for constant creation. Right from setting up a stage in a bowling alley to transforming a cinema into a fun and safe space for children, portable church volunteers can really let their creative juices flow.

In fact, churches have successfully launched in all kinds of bizarre portable venues, including a zoo, casino and fire station! Are you ready to start experimenting?

Myth: Your own building means more freedom

Your own building means that YOU can decide what to do with it, and can come and go as you please! Why should your church be restricted by the terms and conditions of a rental agreement?

Interestingly, churches actually enjoy more freedom and flexibility with the portable church model than in a permanent building. A church on wheels means that you can upsize or downsize to suit your needs. A permanent church, on the other hand, is a long-term commitment.

Portable facilities provide a unique and flexible environment to accommodate both church growth or decline. Why be stuck when you can be nimble?

Are you planning to start a church? The decision to launch in a unique, portable venue as opposed to a permanent tied-down building might be the smartest one you make today.

The experts at Portable Church Industries have been helping churches successfully move into all kinds of venues for the last few decades. Give us a call today at 800.939.7722, and we’ll help you find the perfect venue for your church services, too!

In the meantime, Download our FREE E-book today for all the tips you need in order to choose the right facility for your church! Find the Right Venue For My Portable Church.

Movie Theater Church Leaders