Sunday was a day for me to witness some creative thinking in our synod. My day began in Wichita Falls, joining the congregation at Trinity for worship. It has been a couple of years since my last visit there an a lot has happened in that time.
The congregation faces a challenge that so many do – how do you maintain a building that is way too big for the current congregation? In the era of “if you build it, they will come” thinking, they built a huge addition that now stood mostly empty.
So they founded a creative solution: sell the building to a big and growing Young Life organization and develop a relationship that allows them to stay in the original part of the building for the life of the congregation.
The congregation sold the building for a relatively low price in exchange for a rent free arrangement for at least the next five years. Young Life made many improvements, including a total makeover and renaming of the part of the building they use. It’s now distinctly different from the outside appearance. Inside, they remodeled the fellowship hall of the original building to include two new offices for the church and a pastor. It’s a perfect size for the congregation and the relationship is good. Two distinct “buildings” joined by a common heart.
In the afternoon I witnessed a different kind of creativity when I joined the congregation of Trinity, Fort Worth for an outdoor worship service to officially install Associate Pastor Will Foster. Pr. Foster and his wife, Denise, moved here in January and are fully invested in the community already. Denise is a teacher at the preschool run by Trinity as well. But now the celebration to welcome and install him was finally able to happen.
Welcome, Pastor Will and Denise!