Forest Grove Land Sale Proposal Summary

Council has recommended that FGCC sell the undeveloped land on the East side of our Attridge property (outlined to the right). We have a Memorandum of Understanding with Meridian Development and Luther Care Communities for the sale of this land. The agreement includes provision that there will be two phases of development.

The first will be to develop a condo building of 50 units on the East section of the property – near Berini Drive below. The proceeds from this development will assist in the second phase which will be to build an assisted living complex on the west side of the property that has 122 independent living units and 22 intermediate care home units – see below. Luther Care will lead this second phase but Meridian will build both buildings.

The proceeds from the sale will be used for ministry of Forest Grove Community Church in our city. Details about this have not been discerned specifically yet.

There will be a vote on this council recommendation after the Sunday morning services at Broadway and Attridge on September 25, 2016.

Click the button to the right to see a detailed version of the site plan.

Below are some previous communications further explaining this plan

Letter from Pastor Bruce

June 23, 2016

Dear Church Family,

What gives you a sense of satisfaction? One of the reasons I enjoy carpentry is the opportunity to transform wood and other material into something useful (and maybe even beautiful). The sound and smell of cutting wood through my table saw is music to my ears – especially when I manage to keep all my fingers! The beauty and use of a finished product is immensely satisfying for me.

Just over two weeks ago our church gathered at our congregation meeting to hear about the potential for construction on a much grander scale. We reviewed plans to transform the empty lot beside Forest Grove Attridge into a residential condominium and also a senior’s residence operated by LutherCare Communities. If you click here you can see a general concept of the plan at this stage, though it is still evolving.

The site would be developed through a partnership between our church, Meridian Development Corp. and LutherCare Communities. The construction and operation of the facilities would be the responsibility of the other partners while giving us opportunities to help seniors with pastoral care and connections with youth and other groups. The sale and development of this resource, will allow us to expand our ministry on this site, as well as our other sites (and beyond).

The congregation was strongly supportive of the concept while noting some concerns around issues like parking. We will continue to develop the plans and will have a couple of “open houses” over the summer to give you opportunity to view the plans again and talk to both council and task force members. The tentative dates for that are July 24 & August 21 before the service (9:30am) at our Attridge location. You can also email questions to Clint McDonald (our Moderator) or any of our council members if you scroll to the very bottom of the linked page. You can also email Brian Heagy or Don Neufeld  as co-chairs of our Greenspace Task Force. The current plan is to have a final vote on the sale of this land for this development on September 25th immediately after the services at both congregations.

As a hobby carpenter, I get a thrill out of building projects around the house (and Lisa gets even more excited when I finally finish one of them). So it’s natural for me to share the enthusiasm of the potential for construction and new buildings near our church, especially after waiting for so many years.

As we think about these projects, I want to remind myself, and all of you, that our primary focus needs to remain on the transformation of our lives to be more like Jesus. That is our vision and the reason our church exists. It makes me think of one of our foundational Scripture passages as a church that talks about the mixed metaphors of gardener and builder in 1 Cor 3:

 After all, who is Apollos? Who is Paul? We are only God’s servants through whom you believed the Good News. Each of us did the work the Lord gave us. I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field. You are God’s building.

10 Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have-Jesus Christ.

It’s exciting when lives are changed. At the same time it’s challenging to measure that transformation even though we know it is happening. I believe our annual survey is a helpful way for each of us to reflect on where we are in the journey by taking an honest look at ourselves.

Last week we sent out our annual transformation survey to the people who attend Forest Grove Community Church at both Attridge and Broadway congregations. Please take 10 minutes to complete it – you can fill out the survey by clicking here. Once we compile the results, we will have a better sense of how we are doing as a church. And it will be even more helpful as we will have some comparisons from last year. This survey will close one week from today on June 30th.

I also remind you that our new ‘fiscal year end’ is also coming to a close in one week (June 30th) as well, as we conclude our transitional (stub) budget. I invite you to worship extravagantly through giving as we come to our new fiscal year end next week.

Blessings in your transformation journey.

Bruce Signature

Bruce Enns
Lead Pastor
Forest Grove Community Church

A Letter from Pastor Bruce

April 8, 2016

Why is everything changing?

changeHave you ever been in a phase of your life when everything seemed fairly unsettled? For some this can be a short season and for others it can be years of constant change. I have been struck by how often I’ve seen the word “shift” or “shifting” as a major theme in various reports and presentations in the past few months. One example as we look globally, is how massive groups of people from countries closed to the Gospel are re-locating to places where the Gospel can be proclaimed in freedom. Many are coming to a new faith in Jesus.

It feels like our church is entering a phase of ‘shifting’ right now. I sense that God is inviting us again to new opportunities – I believe unsettling us in a good way – as we discern our path forward. I know this can feel uncomfortable as there are a lot of things happening at once:

  • We are looking for a new pastor for our Broadway congregation.
  • We are making progress on plans for selling / developing our greenspace (the open area beside the parking lot at the Attridge site). More information on this will come at our June 5th congregation meeting.
  • We are discerning how to proceed with the invitation to start another congregation in Silverwood Heights.

What about the good old days?

Good Old DaysI find comfort in looking into our past and recognizing that our church (and our MB denomination) has been in situations like this before. In fact it’s part of our DNA! Historically, these unsettled times were opportunities to grow, transform and change. Some of these I shared at each of our sites a few weeks ago:

  • Why did our church run out of room after the first two years in our new building at Nutana during the 1960s and start discussions about expansion or moving.
  • Why did we build the Forest Grove facility with seating for more than 800 in the 1980s when our church had only 300 people?
  • Why did we become a multi-site church in 2010 and establish our second site at Broadway with a goal to add additional sites in the future?
  • Why are we reassessing our unique calling at Broadway while we search for a new pastor for that congregation?
  • Why are we considering the invitation from Living Hope Church and the Saskatchewan Mennonite Brethren Conference to take over the building and site in that location to begin a new work – a replant – in what would be our site three?

It’s all about transformation in Jesus. That the hope and the power of the Gospel of Jesus will transform individuals, families, workplaces, our city and beyond – all to the glory of God. It’s following Jesus’ call to sacrifice and multiply for the sake of others. Our predecessors knew, and we know, that we are called to be salt and light. We dare not lose our saltiness since how will we become salty again? (Mark 9:50) – “You must have the qualities of salt among yourselves and live in peace with each other.” There is a direct correlation between this unity in the church and saltiness. My prayer is that we will live both of these out as we discern the way forward together.

What’s next?

Many attended our March 13th meeting and I was so encouraged by the positive spirit of unity, the good discussions, and the passion for God’s kingdom work, that was expressed by people of many ages. There was significant support for continuing with our discernment of a new north site at Living Hope and some great questions from many of those who are feeling cautious about proceeding. We are planning to continue the dialogue with another information session on Sunday, April 17th immediately following both services (at Broadway and Attridge) where we will have further updates on the questions raised on March 13th. Then in similar fashion (immediately following both services) on Sunday, May 15th we will ask our church members to vote on the path forward. We continue to ask for your prayer, your discernment and your input.

We have tentatively planned for our next Prayer Summit to be on Sunday, May 1st. Please mark your calendars for this key time to pray together in our discernment. More information soon.

What about the issues people raised?

We have had some good initial discussions with a number of qualified and gifted potential candidates asking about the Broadway position. It will be exciting to see who God leads to this position, and also to the pastor position at the north site if we proceed with that as well. One of the benefits if we were to be discerning and hiring two site pastors in a similar time frame is the efficiencies of considering candidates fit for the uniqueness of each site as well as the orientation and training that needs to happen.

There are also numerous individuals and couples who have expressed strong interest in being part of the north site if we are to proceed. It is their story to tell others (not ours) once they are prepared to do so, but we are greatly encouraged by the response we’ve seen already.

We are aware of much of the history of the two churches previously in the Silverwood location. We are seeking to understand the leadership, spiritual, and structural issues that were there as best we can. But at the same time realize that this would be a completely new work after closure and months of dormancy.

As a multi-site church we already have one common vision, mission, values and structure. They are:

  • visiontransformation in Jesus Christ
  • to be a covenant community that loves God, disciples one another and reaches out from the river to the ends of the earth
  • Faith / Dependence / Relationships / Relevance
  • each congregation has unique structures and expressions of 1) Corporate Worship 2) Missions 3) Small Groups and 4) Family Ministries

Each of these would be further refined by the leadership group of the north site, council and staff, but there is already lots of clear vision in place.

I really appreciate all the expressions of support for our staff during this process and the concern for the additional workload it places on us. While there’s no question there will be more work, each new pastor brings enthusiasm, gifting and support that will be a blessing to all of us. And our current staff are committed and willing to serve the church in whatever ways are needed, working alongside and training others for the work of the ministry.

Where is our focus?

We serve an unchanging, faithful God who continually changes us. As we journey through these exciting times together, I want us to keep our eyes focused on Jesus and the incredible opportunity we have to be transformed more and more into His image as we walk in obedience and faith, bringing the message and hope of the Gospel to our city and beyond.

Blessings for the journey.

Bruce Signature

Bruce Enns
Lead Pastor
Forest Grove Community Church