People have been asking: what is happening in Bethel’s new wing now that we have invested over a million dollars to build it? People have also been asking: what is going to happen with the old wing, now that the staff no longer use those rooms as their offices? I am dedicating this and next week’s Pastor’s Corner to answering those two questions. Today I will focus on the new wing.
Initially, we had some challenges as we settled into our new offices. The inevitable post-construction fixes to the building, combined with the pains of getting a completely new computer system, sometimes tested the staff’s patience to the limit. I am happy to say that those “birth pains” are almost completely behind us now.
The upper level of the new wing (or the “west wing” as we sometimes call it) has become both a comfortable work place and a dynamic work environment for the staff. Each staff now has adequate work space to do what they have been called to do--for Wendy and Val who shared an office, divided by a temporary wall, that has been an especially welcome change.
For me, the most exciting benefit of this move is the dynamism that has resulted from having our offices so close together and having a beautiful, common meeting place just one step away. Studies have shown that the interaction that results from this kind of proximity increases creativity and motivation, and I am seeing that happen each day that I come to church.
So when will coffee be served after Sunday services in the new wing? Good news! That is coming soon. Our plan is to have refreshments in the new wing after church on Sundays throughout the month of May. The new wing is smaller than the area in back of the sanctuary, so we will have to experiment to see how everyone likes this arrangement.
One last thing has to be said about the new wing. As much is happening downstairs as upstairs. The lower level is home to our youth program (teens and young adults) as well as to the Oasis woman’s ministry. It is really a beehive of activity.
If you visit the new wing, you’ll see that a few touches still need to be made, but things are coming along. Sit on one of the new couches. Envision tables for four with chairs scattered around the upstairs foyer area—which is part of the plan for the not-too-far future.
Thank you Bethel, for your vision and courage in taking the step to expand the building for the sake of ministry!--Pastor Tom
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