Heart & Mind – September 2023 – Dr. Louis Yock

This Sunday, September 3rd, will be our first Sunday Service in the Social Hall. We
were told by Mr. Thalman that they would need about two-thirds of the space in the
Sanctuary for the construction, and so on August 29th, we began the process of
packing-up the Sanctuary. This included safely storing what was not going to be used
in the remaining one-third of the sanctuary, and moving what we are going to use to the
Social Hall.

So for the next several months we will be “building the plane as we fly it,” and having our Sunday Service, Social Hour, committee meetings, Adult Ed classes, and everything else, in the Social Hall. The decisions on how to do all these things, and how to do things like enter and exit the church, were discussed in the Worship Committee, the Building and Grounds Committee, the Building Construction Committee, and the Board.

Here, I will share the decisions made so far, and as things change, how we do things may change as well. In using the Social Hall, the greatest objective is to keep a clear passage from the double doors, which will be our primary entrance for the church during the renovation, through the back of the Social Hall, and through the Gathering Space, and keep easy access to the bathrooms, coat racks, name tags, and credenza.

Since the Social Hall doors will be the primary entrance for the church, it is asked that, especially on Sundays, the back parking be reserved for those who need to park closer to the entrance. This is especially the case with snow or icy conditions, when people who park on the street or in the parking lot will need to walk in the alley between the theater and the church to get in. We expect the front door can be used for an exit in an emergency through most of the renovation, but otherwise would ask people not to use the front door until advised otherwise. To enter the church when it is locked, there will be a lock box with a key on the Social Hall doors. The key will be accessible with the same code as the front door. Once the door is open, please immediately re-lock the door with the key, and then use the Allen wrench to unlock the crash bars to open the doors. The inside double doors should always stay unlocked. Notes and tape will remind people of this. For the Sunday Service, it is asked that once you are seated, as much as possible, remain seated for the service. If you would like to light a candle, please do this before the start of the service.

After the opening hymn, the children will be invited forward for the blessing and singing
“Go Now in Peace,” but the story for the ages will not be read during the service. Before the service, coffee will not be available, and people are asked not to eat or drink during the Sunday Service. For Social Hour, those providing hospitality are asked to bring very simple snacks and set-up before the service. Coffee can be made before the service and stored in the carafes.

I want to thank everybody in advance for all their help and patience with these
inconveniences. This too shall pass, and in a relatively short time, we will have a new
front for the church. Over these months of demolition and construction, I encourage you
to look forward to the early spring day when we dedicate the new Sanctuary space.