The plan was a good plan. But, like any good plan, there are always complications. Our plan for March 31, the first Fifth Sunday of the year was a good plan. After months of uncertainty, conversations with insurance folks and remediation folks, and settling upon a plan to renew the Fellowship Hall space, the plan looked good. It looked like something we could accomplish. It looked doable. But, alas, it was unworkable.
Aaron, our renovation contractor, and his crew did their level best to get the renovations accomplished in the timeframe that they estimated. Yes, there are still some punch list items that will be taken care of in the coming weeks, but the bulk of the work is done. But, as the person who looked at the estimates and saw an opportunity to celebrate in a big way on March 31 without considering the cleanup effort that would be needed in the kitchen (which, at this point, has not been renovated) in order for the celebration to take place, I’ll confess that I was over-optimistic.
We planned to have a dinner after church. Randy Martin, our District Superintendent, was coming to celebrate with us as we re-dedicated the Fellowship Hall to ministries that will point people to Christ. We planned to show off the newly renovated Fellowship Hall (which we will be proud of) while acknowledging that there needs to be a phase 2 and a phase 3 of the renovation to make the space truly a space to be proud of. As anyone who has done a renovation can attest, you get one thing finished and you then realize that there is more. Looking at what has taken place, we realize that we need to eventually redo the bathrooms while we prioritize a needed kitchen renovation to best serve the goal of fully utilizing this space to enhance and expand the mission and ministry of McFarland to our community.
But, just as God’s plan doesn’t necessarily work on our timeline, construction timelines don’t always work to our timelines as well. As I mentioned above, with the exception of some punch list items, the construction is finished. The mold remediation contractor had a final treatment to perform, which happened last night, and the space needs to be unoccupied for a time following that treatment. The timeline, as of this week, would have pushed us to a major cleaning of the kitchen area on Saturday that would have exhausted everyone as we approached the Sunday celebration. In consultation with the leadership of our Trustees, I made the decision to postpone our celebration to allow adequate time to give us breathing room to make a celebration happen without wearing out our folks who will do the cleaning, prep, and cooking for the dinner that we all want to present. Perhaps we can make it happen on Palm Sunday. I’ll let you know when the date is finalized.
Speaking of “all things new,” I want to mention that we are embarking on a new church membership software program that will, among other things, simplify our record keeping, make communication with you easier, and help me as your pastor to serve you better and more efficiently. It will give us better access to attendance information in worship, Sunday School, and in the various small groups that meet throughout the week. It will also allow us the option to expand our giving electronically though this website and through our cell phones while providing folks with the opportunity to set up recurring online giving through an ACH transaction (via your checking account) or through your credit/debit card. Look for more information to be coming on this.
If I don’t say it enough, I am blessed to serve as your pastor. You have impressed me with your desire to live out a calling to serve the community where we are. May we always seek to be God’s hands and feet here in Rossville.
Love you all. See you Sunday!