Ryan Thompson · 1/5/2018
The below letter was sent to the covenant members of Cornerstone Church on January 4, 2018 detailing the possible purchase of the vacant church facility located at 1123 Canal Ave in Nederland, TX.
Dear Cornerstone Church Family,
As I reflect on the last year, I am amazed at the myriad of ways our God has been gracious and kind to us. In the 9 months since Cornerstone Church was birthed, we have welcomed 47 covenant members into our faith family, baptized eight brothers and sisters in Christ, exceeded what was believed to be a stretch ministry budget by 132.1% (you gave nearly $100K in tithes alone in 2017!), launched four community groups, and started church planting partnerships in four different countries. I could go on and on celebrating the wonderful things He has done...Praise God! (I encourage you even right now to pause and take a moment to thank Him!) With the growth we have seen in our church, we have begun to reach capacity constraints in our Sunday morning worship gatherings.
For months we have been praying that God would provide a way for us to create space for more and more people to hear the gospel and be discipled into mature followers of Christ. I believe that God in His grace has answered this prayer. On December 31, an opportunity was presented to us to purchase a recently vacated church building in Nederland. After some days of prayer and fasting, pouring over our budget and financial needs, and dreaming about the future years of Cornerstone Church, I, along with the Financial Stewardship Team are recommending the purchase of this church facility.
The 5,050 sq ft. property is located at 1123 Canal Ave. in Nederland. The worship gathering area doubles the size of our current location with a seating capacity of well over 200 people. An adjacent building consists of eight rooms that would be used for our growing children’s ministry, a full-sized kitchen, and another large gathering area. The church sits on nearly two acres of land allowing for future growth and expansion. An appraisal in 2015 valued the property at $215,000, and our verbal offer of $160,000 has been accepted. It should be noted that the church building is outdated and in need of many improvements. It is estimated that the property would require $100-150K in renovations over several project phases to make it our own (parking lot, HVAC replacement/upgrades, security/safety systems, minor structural modifications, cosmetic improvements, etc.).
I trust that the purchase of this new building would give us space for the Lord to continue to grow our faith family and provide a place of ‘temporary’ permanence that we could call home for many years to come. I look forward to the supernatural unity and relationships that are built as we labor together as the body of Christ to revitalize this church building into a place of flourishing ministry for the exaltation of Christ in our community and to the ends of the earth!
We are calling a special all-church strategy meeting on Sunday, January 7 to give you all the details and ask for your vote of support for this purchase. Though the vote will be reserved for covenant members only, we encourage all those who support the ministry of Cornerstone Church to attend. We will meet at 5:00 PM at the proposed building with childcare provided at Cornerstone Church. You will have some time to walk the property before we start our time of worship and prayer at 5:15 PM. Afterward, we will present, discuss, and vote on the building proposal. A two-thirds vote of the covenant members present and not by proxy will constitute a passing vote. Those with a minority vote in favor of or against the purchase of the building will be shepherded and cared for by the church leadership throughout the next steps of the process.
Because of your generous giving over the last year, we have been able to put aside over $50,000 in a building fund for a down payment on such a purchase as this. This will cover our ability to obtain a loan for the property, but we will need to raise over $100,000 for all of the building improvements. If you are thinking that is not possible short of a marvelous work of God, then you are absolutely right! And our God is able to make all grace abound to us, so that having sufficiency in all things, we may abound in every good work! Pray that God would provide in ways that only He can get credit for.
We know that the church is not identified by a building or a specific location. We, as the people of God, are the body of Christ and the members of His Church. This building and property, by God's grace, will be kept in its proper priority and not distract us from the Kingdom work God has called us to do. Our prayer is that this building would be a tool to remove distractions and barriers to our worship gatherings and allow us to worship together as a faith family for many years to come.
Your partner in the advancement of the gospel,
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