We’ve had many great questions about the renovations we’ll be doing to the sanctuary at our West End Campus, so we thought we’d try to answer them here. If you have any more questions, just let us know!
1) What are we doing?
We’re going to take all the remaining pews out of the sanctuary (we took 10 out before we moved in to make space for our coffee area). We’re also going to put carpet down over all the old tile underneath the pews.
2) Why are we doing this?
For several reasons: 1) Many people continue to tell us how hard it is to hear in the sanctuary. By putting carpet down and using padded chairs instead of pews, it will make it much easier to hear. (2) New Story Church has always reached out to those who have not had a great relationship with church or have been disillusioned by church. For many people like this, pews are not as welcoming as chairs. Creating a welcoming atmosphere is very important to us. And most importantly, (3) It will let us multi-use the space. Right now, the space can only be used for worship on Sunday mornings. By taking out the pews and using chairs, we can set the room up in many different ways. We can have classes, small group meetings, meals, and more. Our eventual goal is to have the space used by us (or Crossnore) many days throughout the week.
3) What will we use instead of pews?
We are going to purchase 200 nice padded chairs that we will use. We will buy good quality chairs that will last a long time and stand up to repeated use.
4) Hold on a minute…you’ve told us in the past that New Story would never spend money on fancy chairs.
I’ve been thrilled that some people have brought up this point! It means that lots of people are working to protect our culture. This is a great thing. At New Story it has always been, and always will be important to us to use every penny wisely. We’d rather spend money on feeding hungry people than pampering ourselves. However, we do not own the chapel where we worship. Crossnore does. They have asked us not to use folding chairs in the sanctuary so that the sanctuary will still have a certain look. This is understandable and totally fair of them. So, we are going to buy very reasonably priced and high quality padded chairs to use. Most importantly, we are not using any budget money for the chairs. We are raising the money totally separately from our budget, so none of our current programs will be impacted.
5) What about the traditional look of the sanctuary?
The sanctuary has a beautiful look and we have worked very hard (painting, blinds, new flooring, etc.) at making it even more beautiful. I personally love the look of the sanctuary as it currently is. But at New Story, we have always believed that what is best for our ministry is more important that what any one of us (including the pastor!) might want. Doing this will definitely be beneficial for our ministry at our West End campus. When I think of all the new people we’ll reach, all the great ministry we’ll do, and all the kids who will benefit from the space, putting aside my own love for the current beauty of the sanctuary doesn’t seem like such a big deal.
6) When will this happen?
We have already been given a gift that will cover the cost of the carpet. We need to raise the money to buy 200 chairs at $50 each. We have already raised over half the amount. If you would like to buy a chair (or more), please click on the donate button at the top right of this page.
So, even though this decision will change the look of the sanctuary slightly, most things won’t change…our love for helping the broken, our using our space and resources as wisely as possible, our wonderful worship services, our friendliness as a church…I could go on and on. Thanks be to God for all the blessings God is giving us! – Pastor Scott