What's NEXT?

NEXT is Five Lakes Church's long-term resource initiative for expanding our ability to serve this community.

We believe that now is the time to position ourselves in Sylvania in a greater way.

• The NEXT initiative will run from November 2021 to December 2024.

• The NEXT initiative aims to raise $5 million toward creating a new home facility for Five Lakes Church.

• NEXT allows us to make a greater impact for generations to come.

• Hundreds of people for over 56+ years have paved the way for us to be part of this church, and now we get to make it possible for those who aren't yet here!

"God has used Five Lakes church to make a tremendous difference in our family's life. From giving our boys a chance to flourish in the children’s ministry to providing an opportunity to be baptized, Five Lakes Church has changed our lives in an abundance of ways!"
Mike Jones
"Our church has had a HUGE impact on our family. It has shaped and developed all four of us into stronger Christians and has given our children incredible roots that have grounded them in their faith and given them the confidence to go out in the world and stand firm in their Christian values and beliefs."
Susan Micsko

Preview Our New Facility

"Why wouldn't I use a portion of what He already owns to help build a church that will allow our local community to have access to a church that offers the ability to have a Christian community which shapes future generations to come to know our Savior, Jesus Christ!"
Joel Salazar


Who is serving on the build team?
  • Benton Cole
  • Greg Arnold
  • Jeff Ballmer
  • Kristy Sutton
  • Michelle Keeling
  • Rick Maroney
  • Joe Schwallie

Our leadership teams and many others have been drawn in for input throughout the process.

What is a design-build process?

A delivery method for building projects where we work with the same team as both architect and general contractor; they help to guide us through the project from beginning to end. We vetted 3 firms: one local, one regional, one national before opting to work with Midwest Church Design and Construction out of Perrysburg.

How many building phases are we anticipating?

We have plans for 2 building phases. Phase 1 is our current project, providing space to about double our current church attendance with an 800-seat sanctuary. It also includes all the additional space needed for Kids Ministry, Student Ministry, and space to fellowship with our faith family. There is no current timeline for building Phase 2, but we felt it was wise to have a plan for future growth. Phase 2 would further expand our sanctuary seating to 1500 seats while adding additional kids ministry space and student ministry space along with adding a gym, and a chapel. Our land was intentionally selected and purchased to accommodate a church facility of this size, but no larger. If God grows our church beyond this capacity, we see further growth coming through additional campuses.

When will we break ground?

Our build team and leadership are closely monitoring developments in the construction industry and prayerfully considering the best time to move forward. We know the steps we need to take, but we are waiting for the right timing to take them. Next steps will be taken at the speed of generosity with wisdom and good stewardship of our resources.

How much will the building cost?

Our target for the project has been $10 million, and we have worked diligently to maintain this ceiling; at the turn of last year, it looked like we would be able to hit that mark. This year, construction costs up 30% (material cost & delivery time, labor cost and availability). Understanding that this inflation is likely to decrease over time, it would not be wise to build a $14 million dollar building now that we might pay $11 million for in a year. Our best price will come from having cash in hand to move forward with confidence as opportunities arise. We are working with Midwest collaboratively to identify the best opportunities at the best time

Will we take on debt?

We would love to pay cash for the facility and are praying toward that end, but we are willing to incur some debt if necessary to complete the project. Based on leadership team discussions and our best knowledge at this point, completing the $5M resource initiative goal will be sufficient to move toward groundbreaking. The remainder needed would come from the potential sale of our building, future financial generosity, and borrowing from our bank. From initial conversations, we are confident that we could borrow far more than we should borrow for the building. We are deeply committed to not putting the church in an unhealthy financial position. In the end, we will own a building that will not own us.

What will happen to our current building?

Our current objective—defined by our leadership teams—is to sell the building. We face two challenges in this regard. A practical challenge is that there is very limited market for our building and property (currently zoned residential). An emotional challenge is that we are likely to get back far less than we have in it, and we care about who takes our space. We are pursuing leads and having some conversations with interested individuals; however, we also have many ideas of how we could use the building for ongoing ministry if we are unable to sell it.

Why do we need a new facility?

We have maximized use of our current facility and land; from here on it will limit our potential for future growth. Our vision is to make a greater impact on our community and the world for the Kingdom of God than we can make in our current facility.

Why now?

Vision: God has led us to this point through inspiring vision and dramatic provision. We do not think His calling to move forward has changed, so we are proceeding by faith.

Growth: Pre-covid with 4 services and 1000+ attending/week, we were experiencing a rate of growth that was unsustainable in our current location. We are currently at 3 services—each consistently growing through 2021—and expect to need our new facility long before it is built.

How are we doing with current attendance?

Our on-site attendance has been steadily increasing through the summer and into the fall semester. Our high point was on the week of 8/15 when we hosted ~700 people on-site (with hundreds more online).

Do you expect a return to large group on-site gatherings post-Covid?
  • We are aware of and sensitive to the challenges of our present world, and we also believe that larger gatherings are not a thing of the past.
  • Examples:
    • UM attendance at first football game: 100,000+
    • OSU attendance at first football game: 100,000+
    • Solheim Cup attendance for week at Inverness: 130,000
    • Kiss concert at Huntington Center: 5000

Monster Jam at Huntington Center: 7000

How is our current financial health?

We are as strong or stronger than we have ever been. Prior to beginning our resource initiative, the generosity of our church made it possible to purchase 15 acres of land, enter the architectural design process, save $2 million toward the building, and remain debt-free. Our general giving to date is 6% over our expectation, and as of August 2021, we are $100,000 in the black for the year (contributions exceeding expenses).

How/when will we launch campuses?

As other churches supported ours in our first decade, we will be prepared to support any new church that becomes a part of our faith family. Our vision is to grow to an average weekly attendance of about 1500 people in order to develop the administrative and financial strength necessary to fully support a new church in its early years. In time, campuses may come from planting in a new place or from adopting a church that wants to become a part of Five Lakes Church. While this is our intentional plan we remain open to the doors that God may present to our congregation in the effort of building His church. There are many models for doing this, and we will prayerfully develop more specific plans and communication when this dream grows closer to becoming a reality.

Our Land Purchase and Process to Date

To review our land purchase and process to date

click here

How is inflation in the construction industry affecting our plans?

Inflation. We’re seeing it in the news everywhere, we’re seeing it in the lumber aisle at Lowe’s, and yes – it will likely have a substantial impact on the new construction facility for Five Lakes Church. As previously discussed, our initial estimates and budgets centered around a building cost of $10 million. This cost and scope were defined using a rough-order of magnitude (or ROM) in 2020. Since that time, steel prices have gone up substantially, as well as copper, concrete, lumber, and construction labor. In the case of lumber (as seen in the chart below), prices have moderated back down to near pre-pandemic levels. We hope to see the same happen with other building materials in the coming year. The only thing that is constant in the commodity markets right now is volatility.  


While we are doing everything in our power to hold as close to the original budget as possible, these escalations were unforeseeable at the time of budget establishment. We are actively working to understand the best times to pre-buy materials, lock pricing, and in some cases, wait it out.  We are looking at pricing on commodity futures as well as construction industry forecasts to help aid decisions. 

Costs and schedules are completely linked in large construction projects. Our teams are also considering the timing of construction and duration of construction as a means to controlling costs. Labor availability, labor pricing, materials pricing, and even time of year will have a direct correlation to cost, so effective scheduling may also help to offset some of the headwinds we are facing regarding inflation. 





How do I support this vision?

On November 7, 14, and 21, we are asking that each individual or family in the church bring a one-time gift and also let us know what they are willing to give above and beyond their normal gifts to the church over the next three years.

Online giving is available