Capital Campaign

Capital Campaign Informational Brochure 

February 8, 2016

Dear Friends and Members of White Memorial Presbyterian Church,

Greetings in the name of our Lord! As 2016 begins, I want to share a few words about our congregation, the conversations around a future capital campaign, the process which has emerged from our strategic planning and strategic implementation efforts, and the health of our congregation. This letter is a very "nuts and bolts" treatment of our process. I hope it will serve as a starting point as we begin to share even more specific plans and the beautiful vision for our church that the Holy Spirit is revealing.

First, a word of thanksgiving is in order. I am grateful for all the faithful members who have served on the strategic planning committee, the strategic implementation committee, the capital campaign cabinet, the building committee, and our partners at Armstrong McGuire who have helped us with a feasibility study and a congregational survey. Their work has been faithful and integral in helping us reach this point.

From the strategic planning and implementation processes over 2014 and 2015, several initiatives were identified.

Some of these were very quick to be implemented:
  •  Fostering a culture of faith sharing and storytelling at White Memorial.
  •  Including minutes for mission, our quarterly God story moments in worship.
  •  Creating the WMPC Word Magazine which uplifts stories of ministry from our congregation.
Others were more complicated and required more planning and preparation:
  1. A commitment to a fourth worship service
  2. A facilities assessment identifying current and future unmet needs
  3. A feasibility study toward a potential capital campaign.

Let me discuss more in depth on the last three items.

1. Fourth Worship

As I write, an alternate worship task force has been at work. A musician, Rich Richards, has joined our music staff to provide leadership and guidance as the alternative service comes to life. By the early spring we anticipate this service playing a central role in the life of our church. It will be held in Pickard Hall on Sunday mornings at 11:00, concurrent with our traditional service in the Sanctuary.

2. Building Assessment

The building assessment has also been completed. Some of the areas of focus are concerned with our current facilities:

  • We need larger, more flexible youth space.
  • Pickard Hall and all of the Knox building have not had significant improvements for nearly three decades.
  • Geneva Hall serves us well, but has serious limitations which impact everything from bible study to our outreach ministry.
  • The kitchen is in need of full renovation.
  • Storage space across our campus is a struggle.
  • There are no bathrooms directly accessible to the sanctuary (which creates several problems, most significantly during funerals on week days when the Weekday School is in session).
  • Other areas of focus concern space which would help us expand our mission to our own members, our neighbors and our outreach efforts. For example, we do not have a fellowship hall. 

The acquisition of the property adjacent to our church campus allowed for the conversation to address these questions. A building committee, headed by Robert Paschal, has identified four North Carolina architectural firms. However, in a time of mergers each firm has partners or offices in other states as well. Each firm also has extensive church experience and excellent reputations. A firm will be selected by the first of March.

  3. Capital Campaign

In terms of a capital campaign, under the authority of our Session, White Memorial contracted with Armstrong McGuire, a local fundraising and stewardship consulting firm. The staff of Armstrong McGuire led us through a six month process. During this process, a vision for a campaign was born, more than 30 interviews with congregational leaders were conducted, and a congregation survey with 597 responses was completed. The capital campaign cabinet, under the leadership of Danita Morgan, Mac McElroy and Gerald Roach learned a great deal.

It has been nearly 18 years since White Memorial engaged the congregation in a capital projects effort. Given the need to renovate space which we already have, and a deep desire for our church to continue its leadership as a Reformed, grace-forward Christian voice in our city and our region, we believe the time for a campaign is fast approaching. This campaign will not begin in earnest for many months. Throughout the spring, through the summer and into the fall we will be making a case and casting a vision for our members and friends to prayerfully consider.

What’s Next?
In the coming months you will see other efforts in our congregation, both on our physical campus and in our community witness. These efforts include:
  • Davidson Chapel is being renovated to expand its uses as a place for prayer, worship, education and fellowship
  • Our youth ministry team is leading us into a time of real innovations as we seek to reach our youngest members with the excitement that only the gospel can provide.
  • Our children’s staff is developing many ideas and reconfiguring some classroom spaces.

While there is much work to do, a vision for what can be is coming into focus. We have an opportunity to offer our best to God by offering our best to our members, neighbors and ministry partners across our city. Throughout the spring you will learn more about these conversations and about the future which is being both discerned and secured. I hope you find these possibilities intriguing and exciting. I know that I do.

A capital campaign is more than buildings: it is about our future as a congregation. For more reasons than space allows, the time is upon us to each consider our support and gifts to allow our church to work toward a future which is as faithful as our past. The campaign we envision will affect every aspect of our congregational life: our service ministry, our pastoral care ministry, our worship ministry and our educational and formation ministry. We believe this campaign will allow us to worship, embrace and serve in the manner of Christ for many years into the future.

As I pray to be faithful to the ministry to which God has called me, it is a privilege to serve as your pastor. As 2016 begins, know that our membership is strong, our financial picture is healthy and we are at a place where thinking and talking and praying about the next 70 years of White Memorial is not only exciting, it is required.

May grace abound, always,

Christopher H. Edmonston

Capital Campaign Informational Brochure 

Gerald Roach, Chair of Imagine: Giving Our Best to God

Building Committee Members
Robert Paschal, chair
William Allen
Allison Glenn
Allen Jones
Joe Lemanski
Cissy Livengood
Margaret Weaver
Tom Davis
Christopher Edmonston and Gary Fulton, staff            

Capital Campaign Committee Members
Mary Bossong
Kristye Brackett
Lyn Maness           
Danita Morgan, chair
Margie Pipkin
Lacy Presnell
Blair Schrum
Libby Staub
Linda Turner
Christopher Edmonston, staff