April 30, 2018
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
This is truly an amazing and exciting time in the life of Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church. We have just completed 14 building expansion meetings where we were able to reach 114 individual stewards and 84 stewardship families. Special recognition to Fr. Vasileios, Bill Robertson, and John Stefos who worked tirelessly to develop the informative and articulate literature to facilitate the meetings. Also, THANK YOU to the following families who opened up their homes to host these meetings: Jason & Amity Garwood, John Stefos & Meredith Norris, Tom Gouris (Men’s dinner @ Mt. Tabor Hall), Denis & Sonia Phocas, Allen & Julie Wynn, Scott & Katina Kenyon, Fr. Vasileios & Presbytera Stella Flegas, Brandon & Jennifer Suehs, and Peter & Cynthia Price. The extraordinary generosity of our host families, combined with the successful turnout of our community members exemplifies the dedication, devotion, and love that we have for our church.
As was agreed upon during these beneficial meetings, our parish is currently in an UNTENABLE SITUATION… we are plagued by limited parking, inadequate Sunday School classrooms, an undersized banquet hall, an insufficient kitchen, and constrained office and administrative facilities. Thanks to your helpful input, we now have a plan that addresses each and every one of these obstacles:
- 140 – 185 total parking spaces (our current parking only accommodates 87)
- 15+ Sunday School classrooms (we are currently in closets, Fr. Vasileios’ office, church hall, etc.)
- 4,200 sq. ft. banquet hall with elevated stage that can accommodate 250-350 people with dancing (currently we have 2,600 sq. ft. with a capacity of 175 people and even less space if dancing)
- 620 sq. ft. commercial kitchen (our kitchen currently has 245 sq. ft. and is a safety hazard with only 1 doorway for entering & exiting)
- 2 priest offices, administrative office, café, bookstore, multiple meeting rooms, and plenty of storage (obviously we are currently constrained in all these areas)
Having just completed Great Lent, Holy Week, and the glorious resurrection of Christ our Savior, it is now time for self-examination, confession, repentance, prayer, giving and sacrifice. Our church is our 2nd home and we want to keep it in order just as we do our personal homes; therefore, we are being called by God to generously donate in order to make these physical improvements. A successful expansion is up to all of us!
During the “town hall” meetings we learned that the total expansion cost would be ~$4M. Fr. Vasileios and John Stefos met with our bank and found out that a $2M mortgage loan is attainable and can be serviced with the financial plan that the Parish Council has recently put in place. Additionally, we will raise $2M by setting aside a monthly mortgage payment totaling $0.5M after 4 years and fund raise the remaining $1.5M. At each “town hall” meeting, our committee was very appreciative to gather feedback which will allow us to make improvements to the original plan. In fact, we are going to review each point during upcoming meetings with the architects. No matter what changes are made to the final exterior design, we need to move forward and generously begin the fundraising campaign NOW in order to complete the expansion project by 2022.
As we remember, just 150 families were able to fundraise $1.3M from 2002-06 to build our sanctuary. Thus, our challenge of asking 200 families to raise $1.5M from 2018-22 is even more attainable than it was 15 years ago with a much smaller community. We are asking that families make personal sacrifices to accomplish this goal for the glory of God. From the table below, you can see that this goal is definitely within our reach.
We ask each of you to pray about this, and to submit the attached 4-year pledge form by Sunday, May 13 so that we can determine whether we have the financial support that we need from the community to proceed with the project. With your earnest and loving help, I am sure it is most possible. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us!
During this time of celebration of the Resurrection of Christ we must remember that everything we have is from God and belongs to God. So, when we offer our talents and money to Him, we must offer it willingly and with generosity. As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, concerns, or recommendations. You can use the following link to access all the literature that was reviewed during the meetings.
Parish Council President