What will Mark do?
Mark's heart is to shepherd people and lead them closer to Jesus. In the near term, he is committed to shepherding all Roshek Campus attendees in the transition to one church building. Mark is committed to leading into Hope's next season of ministry. He will continue to help oversee the Life Group ministry and first-time guest connections of Hope Church, both on-site and online as he has been. Please pray with us for Mark, Emily and their children as they seek God’s will for their next steps.
Will other staff remain employed?
Leading up to this decision, a few of our part-time staff decided for their own personal reasons to step off of staff. A few part-time staff roles that were dedicated to the Roshek Campus will be phased out. We will assist them as much as possible with appropriate severance pay and finding other employment. We will do everything we can to assist these staff members in their transition.
Are we looking for another location for a 2nd campus?
While we haven’t ruled out having a 2nd campus as a future possibility, we are not going to actively pursue another location. Any serious discussion of another location is years down the road.
So how will we continue to fulfill our mission?
Our mission will never change – we will continue to help people connect with God. Our methods will change as our world changes. The Board and Leadership Team believe that reaching people online is a trend that will continue to grow. Online ministry really has no boundaries in the potential to connect with those who do not yet know God or simply want to be fed more. Our goal has always been and will continue to be to reach those who don’t know Christ.
How long has the Board known about this?
Our 20 year lease is split up into 5 year terms. Every 5 years we have the chance to assess and continue under the same terms or discontinue the lease. Our first 5 year term runs through May 2021 and we needed to give written notice 6 months ahead of that if we wanted to discontinue. The Board has had this on their radar screen since the building came under new ownership in January 2020 and COVID hit in February/March. As we approached late summer/early fall, it became clear to us that changes in the way the building will be used by the new owners weren’t conducive to our ministry model and vision. Since September, we have been in earnest discussions with the owners to negotiate next steps. We would have communicated sooner, but we did not have a definitive direction and agreed upon terms until December 2nd. We are grateful to have reached a final mutual agreement with the new owners by the deadline.
How much did we invest in the space? How much did we receive to exit?
Our initial investment was $650,000. About $570,000 of this went toward physically renovating the space (design, planning, actual construction). We will receive $350,000 from the building owners to buy us out of our lease. That represents about 60% of our initial investment after using the space for 5 years. We will also be taking all of our furnishings and equipment to be repurposed for ministry at the Kennedy Campus. Then and now, we see God’s hand at work.
What is the status of our budget?
With increased generosity in the first few months of the pandemic, we were able to finish last fiscal year (ending Aug 31, 2020) with giving close to the previous year. However, beginning in the summer and leading into this fall, giving has been declining as the pandemic wears on. Based on current trends, full fiscal year giving is projected to be about $220,000 behind last year (15% decline). The Roshek Campus expenses amount to about $120,000/year, so we will still be short about $100,000 if giving trends don’t improve. We do have a reasonable emergency cash reserve and will receive money from the Roshek lease buyout, but we want to avoid spending down these funds and focus on a long-term solution to the giving trend we are facing.
With social distancing, will we all fit?
Due to social distancing, we will start 2021 with 3 services, 8:30am, 9:45am & 11am with the 9:45am live streamed. We will stay open to adjusting the number of services and their times as COVID precautions shift.