The (Abridged) History of CLBC
Crystal Lake Road Baptist Church was started in Burnsville, MN in 1967 as a country church. This bustling church plant secured property on the Burnsville/Lakeville border in the early years and has been there ever since. In God’s kindness, the church was also able to secure a single-family home for ministry use, to see growth, and to add an All-Purpose Room to the small building, increasing the total square footage to 5,450 sq. ft.
However, CLBC also faced numerous challenges as they sought to preserve their identity as a country church while the growing city replaced the open fields. In this struggle, CLBC faced a decline resulting in deferred maintenance and diminutive attendance. By all external metrics, CLBC became a church no longer on mission, simply seeking to exist. The small dilapidated building nestled on a large property, dwarfed by condo units, a gas station, and the growing city of Burnsville served as a metaphor for the plight of the church.
In May 2018, this small assembly determined that something had to change. In God’s providence, an area church was actively seeking to help struggling churches in the area become viable and, by September 2018, CLBC voted to receive two pastors to lead what would later be termed a church revitalization.
Over the last two years, God has been kind to CLBC and has allowed them to navigate the challenges that come with resuscitating a church. CPR sometimes bruises ribs and CLBC felt every compression along the way. But new life was evidenced at CLBC as portions of the building were updated, members were added, baptisms and weddings were celebrated, church polity was restructured, and a sense of mission was renewed.
CLBC now faces the next stage of the church revitalization endeavor: securing a location for sustainable growth and a base for long-term ministry. As we enter this new phase, we have renamed as Resurrection Church, indicating our desire to see new life as an assembly.
Re-Potting a Church
Winston Churchill commented that “We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.” During the course of the church re-start, sections of the building that had been used as storage for years were now required for classroom, meeting, and office space. The small building proved less than an ideal home for a growing church. Building code requirements, neglect, and the cost of needed repairs highlighted the challenges of the already small space.
The condition and shape of the church building originally intended to house a small, country church now stood as an obstacle for church growth and activity. Instead of serving to advance ministry, attempts to refresh the tired building would only drain resources and prohibit growth.
In 2020, CLBC began to sense more urgently the need for a larger building for this reinvigorated, church.
A Bigger Pot
Just as plants need to be re-potted to allow roots to spread out and grow instead of becoming root bound, so too would this small, but growing, assembly needs to be re-potted in order to lay down the kind of roots needed to support future, long-term, sustainable growth.
CLBC has identified the old National Camera Exchange building as an ideal location for future growth. This 14,250 sq. ft. building would be a larger pot for CLBC to grow into, putting down deep roots that would encourage maturation and vitality. This large, two-story building has a framework that would allow for repurposing from a retail center to a worship center and a base for ministry.
The NCE building is located at County Road 42 and Burnhaven Drive, providing a visible, highly trafficked location. This move will allow the revitalized assembly to be put in public view, encouraging growth and facilitating ministry. Additionally, the close proximity to the old property will allow the church to continue to nurture existing relationships and to build further on the advances made in the revitalization effort.
Purchasing the NCE Building
In August 2020, we signed a purchase agreement for the NCE building.
Beyond purchasing costs, there is the need to re-purpose this retail building. The NCE building was built in 1992 and is equipped with cost-saving features, such as ADA bathrooms, security, sprinkler system, and other required features that will allow for a less expensive re-model. A precise estimation of the cost of building in an auditorium, classrooms, and other necessary equipment (e.g. sound system, resurfacing the parking lot) is in process.
CLBC's building currently sits on 4.04 acres. The sale of our current property will help finance the purchase of the NCE building and the necessary remodeling.
Perhaps the biggest draw to the NCE building is its position at the heart of the City of Burnsville's "Village Center Vision 2040" plan. The city hopes to reshape the Burnsville Center location into a walkable, residential centric area. If CLBC is able to secure the NCE building, the church will be strategically positioned for future ministry instead of hidden away in its current location.
A Ministry Partnership Opportunity
This pursuit provides a base to further advance our mission to bring glory to God that encourages believers and shares the good news of Jesus to all people. We are excited about this opportunity and hope that you will consider partnering with us as we take the next step forward in our church revitalization endeavor.
We are especially praying for those who would partner with us in this endeavor by:
- Contributing financially to the additional costs of securing and remodeling the new property.
- Praying for us as we seek to sell our current property.
- Considering joining us as we seek to grow and to become established as a church re-plant.
To request more information or details about either of the properties, please reach out to us. We would be delighted to share more about this next step in our church revitalization effort!