This section is from the "How To Pay Church Debts And How To Keep Churches Out Of Debt" book, by Rev. Sylvanus Stall. Amazon: How To Pay Church Debts And How To Keep Churches Out Of Debt.
Unless you have an abundance of money at command, and desire to erect something different from the seventy-five thousand church edifices in the United States, we would recommend that you beware of experiments. Select a church which is suited to your wants and then use it as a model. Among the thousands already constructed, of such various styles of archi-tecture, ranging in cost from $150 to $300,000, some one or more will be suited to your wants. "Their sizes, proportions, materials and cost may be easily obtained, and will indicate which is to be preferred, all things considered. It is not difficult to find churches constructed for $10,000 that will be justly preferred to others which cost twice that amount. Some of them are perfect charms, beautiful, easy to speak and hear in, and in every way attractive and inviting, while others are as notably defective. It is folly to expect any architect to excel the best of them, particularly in their accoustic properties. Churches differ radically in this particular, and no architect can tell why. In some the lowest voice can be heard in every part; While in others of the same size the loudest is indistinct, and hearing difficult, if not impossible. The only sure way to success in this respect is to select a model that has been fully tested, and follow it. The importance of this point cannot be overestimated. It has more to do with the health, happiness and usefulness of the preacher, and the size of the congregation than is generally imagined. For him to strain his voice to make himself heard, and fail, is killing, not only to him, but the people; they will soon leave him."*
In selecting a model avoid all such as are cold, unsocial and unsuited to the true spirit of devotion. A church should present an attractive, genial, home-like appearance, and yet not lack that which reminds us that we are in a sacred place.