July 2016 Congregational Letter

July 18, 2016

Dear Friends,

We stand on the shoulders of generations of faithful men and women who have called St. Andrew’s home for almost 200 years. The change this country has navigated in those two centuries is almost unimaginable. And yet, the men and women of this church rose to meet every challenge they faced.

Similarly, in our day, we are witnessing a profound cultural revolution – a revolution on par with some of the most colossal in history. There are many causes for this profound change, but one that must not be overlooked, particularly for churches, is what sociologists have come to describe as secularism. Simply stated, secularism is the emptying of God from the public spaces; leaving many of our friends and family members to wrestle with the issues of life without recourse to God.

In the face of rising cultural secularism some churches/leaders are advocating a retreat from the public square, effectively abandoning their public witness, and turning their churches into enclaves protecting them from this cultural shift. This has not been our approach at St. Andrew’s nor will it be our approach. We believe that even in these challenging times the offer of the Lord Jesus has not grown weary, neither has the Gospel lost its power. In fact, we believe that this is our kairos moment, our moment of divinely given opportunity.

For the better part of the last decade the leadership of St. Andrew’s has been studying and praying about how we grow the kingdom – how we best connect people to the presence and power of Jesus Christ. We gathered data. We explored options. We listened to the thoughts of many folks inside and outside St. Andrew’s. All the while our ministries were expanding and our impact was growing. The culmination of this process was the decision to launch a capital campaign, planning for the next 25 years of mission and ministry. We are calling our campaign, Imagine 2040.

Today, I want to update you on our status.

Where We Are

Over the past the past few months we have laid the foundation of the campaign by:

  • Presenting our vision for St. Andrew’s for the next 25 years. You can listen to that sermon here.
  • Developing (and continuing to develop) videos highlighting the breadth and depth of ministry offerings that have shaped our church and equipped our members to live the Christian life. It is through our ministry growth and expansion that we will further our mission and grow the kingdom.
  • Establishing a leadership team to direct and oversee our work. This leadership team is comprised of people from across the spectrum of St. Andrew’s.
  • We have secured Beau Clowney Architects and Building God’s Way as our architects.
  • We have secured Fred Reinhard as our Owner’s Representative.
  • We have secured Hill Construction as our contractor.
  • We have secured Thomas & Hutton as our civil engineers.
  • We have secured Dale Watson as our design illustrator.
  • We have designated Lewis Middleton as the contact person for the Imagine 2040 You may contact him at any time for an up-to-date status report.
  • We have held an informational meeting for all of the previous Senior Wardens of our Vestry to cast the vision and seek their input and garner their support.
  • We have held an informational meeting for our LifeGroup leaders to both present our ideas and solicit their input and support.
  • We have held neighborhood meetings for our immediate neighbors whose lives will be directly impacted by our building project.
  • We have appeared before the Mt. Pleasant Board of Zoning Appeals to present our conceptual plan and to gain the variances needed to proceed.
  • We have had an initial meeting with the Old Village Historic District Commission to present our conceptual plan and solicit their input.

What’s Next?

  • We will appear before the Old Village Historic District Commission for their approval in August.
  • Working with our architects we will develop construction documents for our project.
  • With the plans and documents completed and approved we will be able to formally kick off Imagine 2040 this fall and present to you the full scope of the project and invite your participation.
  • We will continue to keep you informed with a campaign newsletter.
  • We will establish a website dedicated to the ongoing campaign providing you regular updates of our project.

What Can You Do?

You will continue to hear more details about our plans to meet our calling over the coming months. What I want you to take away is that our efforts are ultimately focused on growing the kingdom – about deepening faith, about equipping people to be a witness wherever they are called – whether that’s their neighborhood, their workplace, in a church plant, or an international mission field.

Please pray about your part in this project that will have global impact. I invite you see this moment of divine opportunity and to put your hand to the plough with other members of this church and labor in Christ’s harvest field. This is our time to rise to the challenge of sowing the seed of the Kingdom of God in our community and the world.

To God alone be the glory,

+Steve

 

2 responses to July 2016 Congregational Letter

  1. Dorothy Burris July 18, 2016 at 6:39 am

    You certssinly retsinrd some great architd, engineets and construction crew. I had the wonderful experience of working with each one during. my tenure of being the Purchasing Service Manager from 1995 until 2006. Prior to that, I was the Purchasing Clerk from 1991-1995, and worked with them on developing contracts. As the Purchasing Service Manager ( Fancy title for Purchasing Director) I also wore the hats as Project Manager, Construction Manager and Contract Manager. Loved seeing the beautification during those years; however, not so much now. I believe that once again The Town has put development first, and infracture in the wrong order. I’m not referring to your construction project, specifically; just the developments of condos, apartment and home building.

    I certainly pray for your project to be successful; and, you successfully. Jump through each ring of fire the Town throws at you.

  2. Dorothy Burris July 18, 2016 at 6:45 am

    Please excuse the spelling errors; the new Android I purchased has the tiniest letters on the keyboard, and the stylus that came with the phone is to big for the keys. Heavens to Betsy, if that’s the only hitch in my get along then I am truly bleseed by our Lord Jesus.