Over the past several years, Faith leadership has considered what the Lord would have us do to be better positioned for future ministry. We considered raising funds to expand our foyer, we contemplated whether to sell or give away the property to our south and we looked at how to pay down our mortgage debt.
We didn’t have a clear answer to these questions until the spring of 2019. That answer was to undertake a generosity initiative so that we could update our facility and technology while at the same time reduce our mortgage obligation. Last November, we launched The Journey Project with a goal of raising $2 million in two years. Commitments to the project exceeded that, reaching over $2.3 million, and by the end of December more than $800,000 was received. We hit the halfway mark in April, and in June, giving to The Journey Project was over $1.1million!In anticipation of the launch of The Journey Project, we developed a prioritized project list so that we were ready to go as soon as funds became available.Our first project was to create a space for the “front of the house” teams to use on Sunday mornings. The “Volunteer Lounge” now serves as a secure central location for greeters, ushers, hospitality and security teams.We then turned our attention to the North Commons, repainting the space, replacing carpet, resurfacing counters and cabinets, installing new dimmable LED lighting and installing a high quality AV system that now allows the facilitation of the traditional worship service in that space, something that would not have been possible with the previous 17-year-old AV system.Having a great playground for kids was one of the next projects we went to work on in early winter with a goal of having the area completed by Easter Sunday. However, as we began to work on the design of the playground and the surrounding area, it became clear that the project was more complicated than first thought, so the grand opening goal was pushed to early June, just in time for Kids Day Camp. Then COVID-19 showed up. We paused the playground project and instead prioritized the purchase and installation of new camera equipment to enable us to livestream worship services. Because of The Journey Project, the funds were available immediately and we now have the needed technology.During the COVID shutdown, The Journey Project remained on track. In fact, with an empty building, we have made significant progress on many of the facility improvements on the list.Because our foyer is such a central space, we needed to find a way to reduce the sound level when large crowds gather, especially on “normal” Sunday mornings. We hired a sound engineering company to evaluate the sound levels in the space and give us options of how to best mitigate the noise level. The result is that we have now installed 2400 square feet of sound-absorbing panels on most of the horizontal and vertical surfaces throughout the foyer. Not only do the panels look great, but they are making a difference in the noise level. We look forward to the day when we get to really put them to the test when we’re all back together on Sunday mornings. Some of the other more visible Journey Project improvements are new flooring in the Loft, Café, and Big House, as well as resurfaced countertops and cabinets throughout those spaces and in the office. There’s also a new AV and lighting system in the Big House that allows for incredibly flexible and immersive programming for Faith Kids.Less visible but equally important projects include new LED motion sensing parking lot lights that not only look much better than conventional lighting but are programmable and will greatly reduce maintenance and energy consumption. As a bonus, we received a large credit from the City Utility towards the cost of the project! In addition, we added a new “smart” irrigation controller for our sprinkler system that improves efficiency and helps reduce water use. Further down the road in The Journey Project will be upgrades to the Worship Center audio system, especially our aging speakers. We’ll also pay attention to our building’s mechanical systems including the HVAC controls and many of the HVAC units themselves. Looking back over the past six months and longer, we see God’s hand on us. He provided clarity about The Journey Project long before we could imagine its full impact. He paused projects so that others could happen in response to the COVID pandemic. He continues to provide in the midst of incredible uncertainty, and he gives us great confidence that he will continue to do so!
Bob has been a member of Faith for 24 years. He has been Faith’s Administrator for ten years and on staff for 12.At Faith, Bob serves as a writer for the blog, leads a small group, and serves in the Hospitality and Benevolence Ministries.Bob grew up in Loveland and loves buying, selling, and detailing cars and spending time in Maui.