April 23, 2020
Chapel Update! Making the Most of Being Closed for COVID-19
As our building remains closed during the coronavirus crisis, we are certainly missing the opportunity to gather for worship and fellowship together, but we are making the most of this closure by updating our chapel!
Our sanctuary is a beautiful sacred space with a pipe organ for traditional worship, and we are updating our chapel to create a similarly beautiful sacred space for contemporary worship. This will allow The Gathering to have a dedicated sacred space as we seek to grow and meet the needs of those in our church and wider community who enjoy worshipping in a more contemporary, casual, and intimate setting. Even as the chapel will be used weekly by The Gathering, it will be available for other uses as well, such as small memorial services, Healing & Wholeness services, Common Table Common Life services, Holy Week services, smaller musical programs and recitals, and any Calvary or community groups that need a more open space for gatherings or meetings. All in all, these updates will allow our chapel to be used by more Calvary-ites on a regular basis.
Two years ago, following our church-wide Vision 20/20 process and the Engage- Unite-Transform Action Plan, we called Pastor Alice to Calvary with the purpose of beginning a contemporary worship, and she has done a remarkable job - moving the service from monthly to weekly, forming a worship band, enlisting volunteers to run sound, live-streaming, etc. An enormous amount of effort and labor goes into setting up and taking down equipment each week in Fellowship Hall, and it’s long past time that we give The Gathering a similar sacred space on Sunday evenings to what we enjoy in our traditional service in the sanctuary on Sunday mornings. It’s ironic perhaps, but this time of not gathering for worship together is allowing us to be a good steward of the
time we have to make these updates so that when we do gather back for worship, we have a newly updated space in which to worship and gather!
Our chapel is already a beautiful space and has long been treasured by our membership. The updates we are making simply enhance the focal point of the chapel (the stained glass window) while also creating a larger area for the worship band:
• widened chancel area, including raising the piano and organ pits to create one level
• new sound system & other technology upgrades
• new flooring
The organ and piano in the chapel are temporarily being stored while these updates are taking place. The piano will return to the chapel. The organ is finding new home with Calvary’s former Director of Music & Organist, Dr. Kevin Padworski. Many of you know that Kevin is avidly composing music now and enjoys teaching organ lessons. We are so pleased that Kevin and his family will be enjoying this instrument in their home and that the legacy of organ music will continue to be passed down to future generations. The organ in the chapel is rarely played, and we feel that this transition really honors the donors who gave the organ to Calvary many years ago as it will now be played on a regular basis again. Many thanks to our current organist, Denise Lanning,
for thinking of the idea of gifting it to Kevin (after all, we’ve all seen the benefits in recent weeks of an organist having their own instrument in their home…you never know when you might need it!) and to Lori Grohskopf for arranging all the details of the proper and careful removal and transfer of the organ from Calvary to the Padworski home.
Lori Grohskopf (Operations & Administrative Coordinator) and Bill Warren (Chair of Resource Management) have done an amazing job moving on this unexpected opportunity for Calvary quickly and, as always, they are ensuring that we are being good stewards of both our time and resources. The chapel updates are being funded through the building usage income we receive from community groups who use our building and Lori has negotiated a deal that saves us quite a bit of money because the contract workers are hurting for work right now; many of their other projects are on hold. So not only is Calvary saving significant money, we are also keeping these workers employed and paid during this time. Moving The Gathering from Fellowship Hall to the Chapel also allows other groups to use the Fellowship Hall and surrounding rooms on Sunday afternoons/evenings potentially bringing in more income for Calvary, in addition to Calvary being able to have Memorial Service receptions or any Sunday afternoon/evening event in that space as well.
The main group that has been using our chapel is The Threshold, who prays and worships in the style of Taizé. The Threshold’s weekly worship will continue in the sanctuary on Sunday evenings, and they have a new storage closet near the sanctuary. Calvary will continue to have three meaningful worship opportunities each Sunday in three distinct styles and formats: traditional/blended worship, contemporary worship, contemplative worship in the style of Taizé. How blessed we are!
The chapel has long been a sacred space for us at Calvary and these updates will allow our chapel to continue to be an active worshipping space for many for years to come.
We will post pictures as soon as we can once these updates are complete, but we wanted to share the news with you now since the building is closed and we cannot see the updates/changes for ourselves right now!
If you haven’t attended The Gathering yet, check out our virtual worship services on Calvary’s YouTube channel. It’s not quite the same as worshipping at Calvary, but you can experience the feel and style of worship this service offers.