God Is Doing A New Thing at St. Luke’s
You may notice a change in the way our campus looks these days! The construction that is just beginning on our campus has been a long time coming. It all began with a vision back in January of 2016, when the members of St. Luke’s Lutheran Church gathered in homes all across Summerville and the surrounding areas to discuss and pray about about the state of our church property and our hopes and dreams for the future. Those conversations and prayers led us to embrace a vision statement for our congregation: “We envision St. Luke’s to be a thriving and vibrant congregation where all generations are connected together by God’s love as we grow in faith, love, and service.” To carry out this vision, St. Luke’s people made actions steps, as they set out to intentionally form safe and nurturing relationships among all ages that build faith, and build a new facility as well as renovate our current spaces to give us the needed space to enable significant relationship building.
Phase 1: Building Connections in Faith
This exciting vision is well underway and is continuing years later, as we are building connections in faith together through Intergenerational Faith Webbing that is being incorporated into every aspect of ministry. On April 23, 2017, we were able to retire our mortgage on the Education Building. Then, throughout 2018 and 2019, we restored the sanctuary by completely repairing all the damaged wood and repainting the interior and exterior of the building. We renovated our bell tower, Sanctuary, Education Building, and Chapel, setting ourselves up to continue to worship in this space for years to come. Our 3 year Capital Campaign came to a close at the end of 2019, and our congregation continued to be filled with much excitement. Thanks be to God!
Phase 2: Breaking Ground And Breaking Bread
Phase 2 of this project marked the start of another 3 year Capital Campaign in 2020, called Breaking Ground And Breaking Bread Together, which we kicked off in our back parking lot around a meal and a worship service. Our focal point was the hope of breaking ground on a new building in 2020. This was followed by a series of Capital Campaign Events raising money for this wonderful new endeavor.
Unfortunately due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, our expectations for 2020 were unable to be realized. However, in the Spring of 2021, our congregation came together with renewed zeal. On Palm Sunday, March 28, 2021, we met out on the church lawn, in the parking lot, and via Zoom to officially vote as a congregation to take a loan to demolish our current Fellowship Hall/Church Office Building and construct a new space on campus in its place that will serve as a Family Life Center. Then, on April 30, 2021, St. Luke’s signed a contract with Linden Construction.
On May 9, 2021, a deconsecration service was held over the the building that had served as St. Luke’s Fellowship Hall for 49 years. Then on July 21, 2021, our Fellowship Hall was torn down to make room for our new Family Life Center. We watched with grief for the many years of ministry that our Fellowship Hall represented to our congregation, but we also watched with hope-filled wonder, looking forward to the generations of disciples whose faith will be formed on this holy ground.
Finally, on Sunday, August 29, 2021, we celebrated the Groundbreaking of our new building, asking God’s blessing upon this holy space. In the months ahead as we wait to see it come to completion, we dream together of all of the ministries that might take place within its walls!
For more than a year, we watched every day as, little by little, our new building was raised up.
Finally, on November 6, 2022, we held the Grand Opening of our Family Life Center. And on November 20, 2022, we held a prayer walk around the perimeter of our new building during Sunday School, closing out each worship service in the courtyard with a prayer dedicating the building to the glory of God.
Our new Family Life Center is more than we ever imagined. It has offices, reception areas, meeting spaces, a choir room, a large Fellowship Hall that seats over 250 people around tables for a meal, a half-court gym, a stage for musicals, worship, and performances, and an industry-standard kitchen. It now serves as a gathering place to help us accomplish Faith Webbing by building relationships among all ages and provides us with new chances to reach out to those in the community around us as we show them Christ’s love. Join us as we look with hope toward the future!