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Pastor and Mrs. Nees Pastor Zehnder

OUR STORY [who we are]

The year was 1930. As the country was sinking into the heart of the Depression, twenty-seven people came to the door of E. T. Fritz’s home for worship. Bethlehem was born. Little did those first families know how God was going to bless their fledgling church. Still in the throes of a depression, the first construction on our current site was simply a door…with a basement structure behind it. Some day there would be resources to build a 150-seat sanctuary behind that door, and then a schoolhouse, and then additions to the church and school, and then a new 900-seat sanctuary, and then, and then…but for the time, just a door. That door is a symbol of the spirit of Bethlehem. The Next Door Project is all about asking a question the people of Bethlehem have always asked, “In helping people experience fullness of life in Jesus, what is next? What door of ministry needs to be opened?” We stand on the shoulders of some mighty people of God who made sacrifices to impact the generations that would follow. Now, it is our turn to write the next chapter of our story.

To describe the coming days as “exciting” would be an incredible understatement. What we do with The Next Door Project will impact the west side of Denver for generations. It could be the most important thing we do at this location for the next 50 years. Imagine the people gathering in our new central commons: people from all walks of life at “the table”, parents connecting after dropping off their children in our expanded school and early learning center, worshippers from both the new chapel and the sanctuary connecting with one another. It all feels so welcoming, so natural, you do not even notice all of the additional people who have been attracted to this thing we call “fullness of life in Jesus.” God has great things in store for Bethlehem.

New Building : • Ministries united under one roof • Beautiful Central Commons • New expanded Chapel • More School/ELC Classrooms • Excellent security • Upgraded coffee house & kitchen • A place for school families to build relationships • Welcome Center • LifeGroup space • Improved ADA acccessiblity

OUR VISION [where we are going]

As we prepare for The Next Door Project, it is imperative to look past the enormous task of construction to see the spiritual fruit. The new facilities will allow us to minister like never before. This is good, because the ministries of Bethlehem are growing. More families are being transformed by Jesus because our school has grown itself right out of space. More people in our community know where Bethlehem is because we have welcomed them to come and have their lives changed by Jesus. More people are connecting with Jesus in remarkable worship. Bethlehem is alive, fully alive in Jesus.

“The Table”

OUR PURPOSE [how we get there]

In order for Bethlehem to continue to grow, we must allow room for growth in our existing facilities as well as make room for new growth as God expands His kingdom right here in our own community. We must be faithful to use His resources to do whatever is necessary to help build the kingdom. Our church has launched The Next Door Project to prepare us for what only God can do through us. We are looking to construct a new central Commons where our courtyard is (complete with presentation area and coffee house), a new chapel in our Parish Activity Center, more classrooms for our school and ELC, additional LifeGroup space, administrative space, and a new ministry welcome area. With these additions, we will have the space to move forward, impacting our community, that they might hear the loving and saving message of Jesus Christ. These exciting days in which we find ourselves bring us to a new challenge. The total cost of the new facility, completely furnished, is $5 – $6.5 million. How can you be part of such a phenomenal undertaking? • Thank God for His Providence. • Ask God how much He would have you give. • Be obedient and give as the Lord leads. • Be ready to receive the blessings that only He can give.


On Commitment Sunday, November 13, 2011, everyone in our church will be given the opportunity to make a three-year commitment over and above what they are currently giving to the operating budget. Plan to be a part of this Commitment Sunday, and let’s join together in our commitment to sacrificially give toward this exciting vision. Then let’s watch what God will do!

The Next Door Project Brochure  

An overview of the Next Door Project at Betlhehem Lutheran Church

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