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First Things, March 2017

March 2, 2017

For the last few months, the leadership of First Church has been re-examining the church’s long-range plan.

The denial of the zoning variance we had sought, one year ago, brought into question whether First Church could generate the amount of rental income required to maintain our building, provide management services to our numerous tenants, and support the programs of the church itself.  The zoning variance would have allowed us to rent Fritchman Auditorium for commercial events.  Without that possibility the numbers started not to add up.

For years, First Church has operated with a deficit budget.  The two options before us, as always, are to increase income, or decrease expenses. But the even deeper question points to the mission and vision of the church.  These are the same spiritual questions we ask ourselves in worship every Sunday but now are asked of the church.  Who are we?  Why is it important?  What should we do?

In order to answer those questions, the church Board and the Vision and Values Committee authorized by the Board last fall, are undertaking a conversation with the church members called, “Journey to the Center of our Church.”  During March and April, we hope to have one-to-one conversations with every member of the church to hear your answers to questions like, “Why do you come to church?”  “What’s important about this church?”  “What are you most proud about?”  What is the non-negotiable core, the center, of First Church for you?

This is a listening campaign.  The church leadership wants to hear from you.  Expect to be contacted.  Or contact the Board to see how you can get involved.

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