The sound of jackhammers and reciprocating saws no longer echoes through the halls of St. Timothy. The renovation has mostly been completed, though there are a few odd jobs that remain.
If you would have told this pastor when she started here in 2011, after the bruising that St. Timothy had taken, that we would be planning and carrying out a total interior renovation just seven year later, she would have laughed. There was a lot of pain left to process in those initial years together from the upsets of 2009.
But God has a way of surprising us! So it was that the Spirit started bubbling up here in 2014 in various conversations about things that needed attention: acoustics, kitchen, carpet, lights, preschool spaces and more.
In 2015 and 2016, then, we had some initial conversations about renovation. We met with representatives of the ELCA Mission Investment Fund, including Anne Gerrietts and Paula Kitt for their guidance and assessments.
We then held planning sessions, dreaming sessions and cottage meetings, where we gathered lots of input and feedback from the congregation.
Following this came conversations in 2017-18 with architects, design drawings and in-house capital campaign, bid-letting and demolition and construction.
People started offering their gifts of money, labor and encouragement. The pews were reupholstered. We moved out of the preschool, offices and sanctuary the end of May. We worshiped in the fellowship hall for the summer, and through that was a bit hard and required some accommodations, we were faithful and God was praised.
Then, it was time to move into the preschool first and then sanctuary around Labor Day and out of the fellowship hall and the makeshift offices on the east side.
And now, here we are. Almost all put back together. In a wondrously and beautifully renewed facility. God has been so good to St. Timothy!
All along, we've talked about how this renovation is not just for us but for those who will come after us. We've in vested ourselves in the future for the sake of the bright future that God is creating.
Now is a perfect time to let God reinvigorate us, too, through renewed relationships, worship, giving, generosity and commitment.
This Advent and Christmas, I pray that you will open yourselves to this gift of renewal that God brings. And I hope the facility is just the beginning of our renewal as God's people here. Come and see for yourself what God is doing here!
Blessed Christmas, all!