Piety Hill Musings

The ramblings of the 51 year old Rector of St. John's Episcopal Church of Detroit. Piety Hill refers to the old name for our neighborhood. The neighborhood has changed a great deal in the over 150 years we have been on this corner (but not our traditional biblical theology) and it is now known for the neighboring theatres, the professional baseball and football stadiums and new hockey/basketball arena.

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Location: Detroit, Michigan, United States

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Town Hall meeting today - Rector's Rambling for November 20, 2016

Today, after the 10:00 AM Service, we will have a town hall meeting.  What does this mean?
In September of 2014, we had our first town hall meeting to discuss Olympia’s approach to us about developing their, and our, property in the coming year.  We presented to the congregation what we had begun to speak about with Olympia, what their hopes were, and some of what our initial hopes are as well.  We then answered questions and took suggestions.
Since that meeting we completed a contract to lease our land to Olympia (with the Vestry and Parish Meeting’s permission).  In turn they agreed to our using the new parking lot now under construction behind the church, to developing a private park by expanding our garden to more than twice its size, building a drop-off and weekday parking area behind the church, along with handicapped accessibility to the narthex from the garden door, and a sum of money to help up to renovate the building, particularly the office building since it becomes our primary entrance with people parking in the new garage.
Today we gather together downstairs once more to make sure everyone is up to date on the information on these and other projects that will affect St. John’s in the coming months.  There is plenty of gossip and half-truths floating around, and we want to make sure everyone has good information.
Also, we will discuss the roughly estimated cost of renovations that will occur from the work.  Some is covered from that original lease payment, some from the surplus of the last two years.  There are financing options available, secured by the income guaranteed from Olympia’s lease.  We would like to begin to get a sense of what parishioners will be able to contribute to the project over the next five years, and to answer questions on the project.  We hope that we will walk away from that meeting satisfied and with a final plan in mind, so that we can move forward with the renovation in the near future.
Thank you all for your prayers and input as we move forward in the coming weeks and months.