catalyst-conference-wrapupWe spoke about the Catalyst 2014 event in Atlanta a great deal this year—and the event itself certainly met our expectations. The number of influential Christian leaders present there was impressive, and the messages we heard were both challenging and inspirational.

Speaker Highlights

We particularly enjoyed Matt Chandler, an author and pastor of The Village Church in Fort Worth, Texas, who had a very encouraging message for pastors and staff on Thursday night. Other featured speakers included Andy Stanley, from North Point Ministries, whose work planting churches in the Atlanta area is truly remarkable, and Craig Groeschel of, who has embraced the electronic age: His messages are viewed at over 200 churches every week.

In addition to the great speakers, there were some amazing labs, which gave participants a chance to delve more deeply into issues that are facing the church today. One lab, led by Shelene Bryan, Sergio De La Mora and Peter Greer, examined how to challenge the status quo; another looked at how to think outside the box through innovation and featured Matt Redman, Hannah Brencher and Gideon Tsang.

Catalyst Connections

For The McKnight Group, Catalyst 2014 was a very successful gathering. We had a number of friends and customers come visit our booth and talk about their church design and building issues. Some of these:

  • From Epic Church in Philadelphia, we met Kent Jacobs, lead pastor, and Justin Dela Cruz, campus pastor and heard about the great things their church is doing in Philly.
  • Eric Freeman, associate pastor of Daystar Church in Greensboro, North Carolina,  his wife, Amanda spent time in our suite
  • Steve Straka, Fawcett Campus pastor for Rock City Church in Columbus, Ohio, came to see us, along with his colleague, Worship Pastor Ben Crist.
  • From Chicago First Church of the Nazarene, we reconnected with one of our former clients Pastor Brian Wrangler and met Grant Heckman, executive pastor of connections.
  • And of course we spent time with our Catalyst Contest winner, the Reverend Mark Kingen, pastor of Russellville Community Wesleyan Church in Davison, Michigan. He came by with his assistant pastor, David Boroff.

We also enjoyed a great luncheon with Bryan Briggs, lead pastor at Destination Church in Hopewell, Virginia, and two pastors from our hometown Grove City Church of the Nazarene:  Youth Pastors David Morrison, Zack Zaborski.

Looking Forward to 2015 with the Church Design Experts

As you can imagine, we’re already looking forward to Catalyst 2015, which will again be held in Atlanta, on October 7-9.

We are also looking forward to completing our 2015 free i3 webinar schedule—and there’s still time to give us your suggestions. Please share with us the church design, building, and remodeling issues you’re facing, questions you have, and things you’d like to learn more about. You can let us know by sending us an email at, calling us at 800-625-6448, or sending us a letter via fax (614-875-7006) or mail (P.O. Box 370, Grove City, OH 43123).