About a week and a half ago, I presented to the Parish Pastoral Council, the Parish Finance Council, and the School Advisory Board some issues that we are facing at St. James and some possible solutions to them. We discussed needs at the School, the Church, and the Offices. Some of these needs included increased number of classrooms, a separate building for the Early Learning Center, a more secure entrance for the school, a possible gym, and reconfiguration of classrooms and offices.
For the Church, we discussed updating the sanctuary with new flooring, new backdrop (reredos) at the altar, new altar, ambo, and presider’s chair, refinished pews, and a refreshed narthex. There is need for increased meeting space for the choir, youth ministry, and other activities such as bible studies and presentations. There was talk about bringing the offices together and reconfiguring our office space to allow for parlors for spiritual direction, marriage preparation counseling, and meetings.
We have done quite a bit already in a new sound system and live stream system. We have updated and expanded our internet and Wi-Fi capabilities in the buildings. New lights were installed in the gym. The Adoration Chapel was refreshed. We will have increased signage on the campus. We added a digital sign on Montgomery Cross Road. Little by little things are getting done.
The needs and solutions presented are not final and they are not exhaustive. We do, however, need to get the ball rolling with some projects for the school so that we can better serve our students and our families. St. James Church and School are growing and we need to adapt to better minister to and serve our people and the community. We may move faster on some items than others, but in the future you will see a comprehensive plan (that will be subject to some change) for the campus and to address the needs of our parish. I may be asking some people to serve on different committees as we look to the future at St. James! Stay tuned!
May the Lord Jesus bless you and your families abundantly throughout this Lenten Season!
~ Fr. Daniel Firmin