To keep the congregation updated, here is a brief report on new development. At this stage it is an idea in its infancy. Much research and discussion needs to take place before it can be acted upon.

Goshen Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN) is an organization very familiar to our church. We have partnered with them in their mission for about 10 years. IHN has decided to relocate from St. Mark’s UMC to a new location. At some point IHN became aware that we had unused space downtown and they were given a tour of the building several weeks ago.

This past Wednesday, Jeff Griffin, Ruth Sorrell, Pastor Chad and I met with IHN in a fact-gathering meeting.

  • From the discussion it was learned that the only arrangement that works for them is to purchase the entire property. They would give us possession of the sanctuary wing and elevator on some sort of mutually agreeable lease.
  • The biggest hurdle facing IHN is getting zoning and code approval from the City, which is not too excited about them locating downtown.
  • There are scores of issues remaining to be resolved before any meaningful transaction could be negotiated.

To be clear, this was merely a fact-finding meeting designed to gather information for the Leadership Board. No decisions or commitments were made. The Board will look at this, and the other ideas being floated, and attempt to condense them into the doable options for the congregation to consider at a future Charge Conference.

Submitted by Steve Pettit