It has taken almost five years for our sanctuary renewal to move from dream to reality. Renewing our sanctuary for another fifty years of meaningful worship is a great accomplishment. Something that has required so much time and wealth by our members deserves to be celebrated. We will do just that at 4:30 on Sunday, January 31. Our bishop, Suzanne Dillahunt will preside. Our Choirs and band will offer special music. Our brothers and sisters in Christ from St. Pius X will send their Senior Choir and Senior Pastor, Monsignor David Funk to our celebration. It will be a party. Afterward, we will gather for a meal together and to formally say thanks to all of the leaders who gave up significant time to make this big goal a reality. Mark your calendars today to come and celebrate the good things God is doing at Messiah.
We are excited as our project comes to a finish. Our hope is that we will be able to have our first worship service in our renovated sanctuary on Christmas Eve. Please, keep this in your prayers so that everything comes together just in time.
Please be patient with the construction of our worship space. Our sanctuary renewal is causing us to ask for the understanding of the congregation as well as our visitors. We are unable to video the worship service or record the sermons to post online because the video equipment is not available to us. We will post the service again as soon as we are able to access our equipment. Be sure to stay with us for more videos in the near future.
All of the decisions have been made and the final plans have been completed for our Sanctuary Renewal. Thanks to the efforts of Geoff Campbell, Eric Blackburn and others, the permits have been turned into the city and we are awaiting approval before our hired contractors can begin. Over 125 families have contributed over $160,000 towards the project already, and we have confidence the remaining $20,000 committed will soon follow. Things are moving slower than we expected, but they are moving well without setback.
It is hard to say at this time when exactly work will begin, but we hope it will be in June. When work does begin in the Sanctuary, we will not worship in that space until the work is completed. Our contractors estimate the work will take about four months. In that time, we will worship in our Fellowship Hall and have our fellowship after worship in our Fritz Hall. This means, too, that we will not allow our Fellowship Hall to be “rented” by members or outside groups until the work is complete. Plans have been at work, too, to make our Fellowship Hall a great worship space for us in the interim. Be thankful for the leadership of Geoff Campbell during this process and for the generosity of many of our members that are making it all happen. We will provide a good gift for a generations of members at Messiah to come. Peace, Pastor Karl
It has been months of work by many volunteers, but we are ready to announce revisions to the original sanctuary renewal concept that will match our congregation hopes with the nearly $170,000 raised.
We will remove the pews, replace the center support board with solid wood and upholster the seats. We will reinstall the pews at an angle, allowing better sight lines for the altar and more wheelchairs spaces.
We will replace the screen and the projector with better, updated equipment to enhance our visual experience. We will continue to use the same swinging post to hide the screen when not in use, but we will move the post back to the last beam in the chancel area, so that when it lowers it does not hinder movement in the chancel. We will reroute the sound jacks in the chancel to limit cords and clutter.
The altar and the multilayer pedestal that the altar sits upon will not move. This means the choir will not be able to be seated behind the altar, as in the original concept. Instead, we will raise the entire floor of the chancel to the level that the communion rails currently sit. The communion rails will only be visible on the Sundays they are needed for communion.
Raising the floor to this level, will make the entire chancel one level, except the pedestal holding the altar. This will allow the grand piano and organ to be placed next to each other on one side and the band to be along the other wall as depicted in the original concept. Three foot vanity walls will be built in front of the band and organ to hide their clutter from the congregation. The new hollow floor will allow for jacks, outlets and ports to easily be installed in key places to hide the clutter of wires. The original pulpit will move off of the steps and become a portable piece of furniture. Craftsman will take the wood of the lectern and create a new baptismal font, similar to our current font, but larger to balance the pulpit on the opposite side of the chancel.
Nave (seating area)
The stained glass windows will be framed to make them stand out from the brick wall. Soffits matching the current speaker soffits in the chancel will be built to cover the two side aisles of the nave. Spot lights will be in these soffits to both add lighting for parishioners and to highlight our stained glass.
All of the red carpet will be replaced with durable carpet tiles, similar in manufacture to what is in the Fellowship Hall. No color for the carpet has been determined. The flooring under the pews will be covered with vinyl planks, simulating hardwood.
Hoped for additions if money allows…
- upholstering the back of the pews
- lightly refinishing the pews
- installing duct work in the soffits for future air conditioning improvements
- making the sacristy lounge entrance door a double door
- sound board improvements
Major items in original concept not being considered…
- sacristy and sacristy lounge remodeling
- office suite remodeling
- remodeling of the sanctuary loft
- new air conditioning
- replacing the rear wall of the knave with plate glass
- purchase and use of any pew chairs
So, what now?
Property Chair Geoff Campbell and member Tom Marquart will work together to choose one of three contractors that formally bid on this project. They will then work with the contractor to obtain the necessary permits and commission the necessary drawings for construction. Geoff and Tom will also appoint a separate group that will choose the color of the carpeting, vinyl planks, paint for new drywall and refinished wood. It is hoped that construction will begin in April. At this time, we do not know how construction will affect our worship life in the sanctuary or when construction will be completed.
In December, we voted to move forward with an exciting concept for the renewal of our worship space. The architectural drawings presented to the congregation were the result of a busy year by a task force of our members assigned to listen to the congregation and research the best worship practices today. Since, the vote there has been even more work behind the scenes to do. From great discussions with our members in November and at our congregational meeting, we made some major changes to the drawings but still reflected the concepts put forward by the Sanctuary Task Force. We also decreased substantially the cost of the project. Great, new drawings of the project are now on display in our Narthex.
Now what? Council has appointed Brent Yekisa to lead a Commitment Leadership Group that council member Glenn Harris, Pat Speakman, Phyllis Sneed, and myself will serve. They will be sharing information in newsletters, house meetings, videos and more and gathering people in the months ahead to help us all become even more acquainted with the benefits for Messiah and our community of this renewal, and discern how we can support it. On Pentecost Sunday, we will have a celebration as we commit our resources for this new vision. By Pentecost the following year, we could be worshipping in this new space. This is a great time to be a part of the church as God keeps Messiah Moving Forward.
Peace, Pastor Karl