Monday, April 13, 2015

News and Views

Building Committee
This coming Sunday, April 19, we will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the laying of the cornerstone of our present church building.  I've outlined a bit of our history in other  blogs including the fact that we didn't begin to worship in the present building until 1991. However by April 1990, we had purchased the land and construction was set to begin.

      As part of our celebration, Rev. Peter Coutts will preach.  Rev. Coutts was the minister during construction of the building and preached the dedication service in 1991.  How happy we are that he accepted our invitation to return for the celebration.  That's him  in the picture above, second from the right front row.

       Rev. Coutts was also a contributor to our early newsletter called "News and Views, from Pulpit and Pews."   Here is an excerpt from the July 1990 issue. 
This summer also marks the beginning of another significant change in the life of our church: the erection of our building.  With its completion we will be shifting into a new kind of permanence and open to new avenues of life and service before God.  Jobs like putting out the sign on the roadside each Sunday will give way to vaccuming OUR carpet.  We will have a central meeting place that is always there as well as the control of the thermostat!

The life of our congregation has seen many changes over the last three years, but none will be as great as the ones we will see as we move into our own building.  So much more will be available to us because it is there.  And we will no longer have as an excuse, "if only we had a building."

With this change I will still be learning what it is to be a minister.  but at the same time you will be challenged even more to learn what it is to be a congregation, as we are faced with new issues and tasks made possible by the building.
  I look forward to making this journey in learning with you.  Peter.

     At the same time as the congregation was absorbed with the challenges of erecting a church building, they were also following the progress of Rev. David Smith and his wife, Hazel, in the Interior of B.C.  The Smiths, in retirement and with David facing significant health challenges, had taken on a support role for a foundering congregation in Castlegar.  Rev. Smith was under doctor's orders to conduct Sunday worship and visit one day a week only-- a restriction he found difficult to observe but one essential for his health.  Despite this constraint the Smiths spend several months helping a small congregation move from despair to hope.   
     The ladies group, which had ceased to operate, began meeting again and gave two luncheons, headed up an Easter breakfast and organized a garage sale.  They found an organist and had regular Bible study during Lent.  Eventually, under Rev. Smith's guidance, three congregations joined into one mission charge and hired a full-time minister.  The Smiths had been so successful they'd worked themselves out of the job!
   How apt that our congregation, which began life under the Board of World Mission, should become an informal sponsor for another.  Presbyterian's Sharing, indeed!
Early landscaping

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