Dear St. Paul's Family,
We just endured the driest of summers, but on the occasional rainy recent Sundays you may have noticed how dry the sanctuary has been, sheltered by our newly renovated roof. The effort to repair our rapidly degrading structure, led by our Junior Warden, Jerry Coleman, was engineered not as a quick fix, but with a steady eye to the future. We now have a “fix” that will last, but did not come cheap . . . the unbudgeted cost ultimately exceeded $60,000. Each member of the vestry responded to this crisis by making a one-time pledge to defray this unexpected major cost, and Rev. Catie asked that the congregation prayerfully consider joining the vestry in this effort. Ultimately, in excess of $30,000 was raised for which we are thankful, recognizing however that we will likely have to borrow to make up the balance due.
We have also noticed over the years that our original house of worship, the Old Stone Church, is increasingly in need of repair. This building, in excess of 100 years old, is utilized today for our 5 p.m. Sunday service and is a meeting place for Girl Scouts, young adult spiritual gatherings and community concerts and recitals. St. Paul's has recently prepared a Historic Structure Assessment and is applying for a grant from the State of Colorado which, if awarded, would contribute $200,000, roughly 67% of specified repairs. As a condition of the grant, St. Paul’s must match 25% of the grant allotment. If granted in 2019, this project would allow us to increase our contributions to the community with the availability of a beautifully enhanced historic jewel.
Our stewardship theme this year is, predictably, “Building our Common Home; A Faith Journey.” But don't be misled into thinking that this is just a “brick and mortar” year! Our church home is far more than just the buildings we occupy. We now are and will be through 2019 working resolutely to advance our Priest in Charge Discernment process as we define our past, present and future dreams into a parish identity that will deeply inform Rev. Catie and our congregation as we reach together that point at which a decision can be made about our next Rector. We will continue to search for ways to provide essential services outside of our doors and into the community, to enrich the spiritual growth opportunities for our adults, our children, and our youth, and to grow our membership by demonstrating our hospitality and love for one another. This is our faith journey.
Our stewardship drive begins Nov 4, and will continue through Sunday, November 25. For three Sundays in November, we will have three lay preachers reflecting upon three facets of “building” -, spiritual, communal, and physical. Our goal is to secure 70 pledges (a 19% increase over the 59 received in 2018, which was a 37% increase in the number of pledges from 2017) and to raise $520,000 – a very ambitious goal that reflects a growing budget now burdened by an unanticipated building repair, and our bold initiative in preserving our history in the promise of our future. As the campaign matures, we will provide more detail about how the St. Paul's spending plan fuels our ministries. We can also expect that each St. Paul's family or individual will receive a phone call from a vestry member to provide more insight into the campaign's goals and aspirations.
It is our fervent hope that the simultaneous concentration of mission and resources over the coming year will excite and unite us in a clear vision of our work in the service of God.
Roger Young, Stewardship Ministry Chair