Christ Church

I wrote a capital campaign case statement for Allen MAC client Christ Church in Greenville, South Carolina. I also designed the campaign logo and case statement brochure.

Campaign Case Statement, Logo, Stationery, Pledge Card and Case Statement Brochure

Christ Church Doorways to Discipleship campaign case statement brochure

Doorways to Discipleship

Christ Church is a thriving community of nearly 4,000 parishioners that traces its roots in the heart of Greenville to the 1820s. Under the inspired leadership of our rector, the Rev. Dr. Robert S. Dannals, Christ Church is well-organized, well-staffed and well-managed to affirm the Gospel and fulfill our mission. The extraordinary range of services, programs, activities and events offered by Christ Church has sustained a steady increase in membership that for decades has paralleled the strong population growth in the upstate of South Carolina.

Due to our growth and the remarkable popularity of our programs, certain of Christ Church’s facilities have become inadequate. These space constraints not only limit individual access to important programs and services but discourage the healthy growth of Christ Church.

Over the past several years, the Christ Church Vestry and numerous committees have devoted countless hours to surveying the parish, identifying the present and future needs of our growing congregation, evaluating our current space, and setting priorities for facilities renovation and expansion in light of the mission of the Church. From their efforts, ambitious plans have emerged to renovate and refurbish existing facilities and to build the new structures we need to serve our growing membership and programs.

Through the “Doorways to Discipleship: Disciples Making Disciples for Jesus Christ” capital campaign, Christ Church seeks to raise a total of $14,250,000 for:

  • additions and renovations to the Parish House
  • a new Parish Life Center
  • a new central energy plant
  • the purchase of property adjacent to the Church campus
  • a tithe for outreach

The following case statement provides information about Christ Church’s immediate and anticipated needs for space, the proposed construction and renovation projects, and the “Doorways to Discipleship” campaign. We earnestly ask for your thoughtful and prayerful consideration of the campaign and hope you will plan your participation to reflect the value and importance of Christ Church in your life, in your family’s life and in the lives of all the people we serve.

‘Where Lives are Changed and Miracles Expected’

As part of the Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina, Christ Church sees itself as a missionary church where, by God’s grace and through prayer for guidance by the Holy Spirit, “lives are changed and miracles expected.” Through worship, discipleship, stewardship, service and witness, our parishioners actively answer God’s call to be—

  • An inspiring and worshipful community welcoming to all
  • A teaching, learning, and renewing congregation for all ages
  • A generous, sacrificial, and joyful steward of God’s gifts
  • A caring parish that sees and responds to the needs of others
  • A proclaiming people by word and action, leading others to Christ

Recently, the clergy and lay leadership of Christ Church created a powerful new mission statement based on Christ’s Great Commission, as recorded in Matthew 28:19-20—

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.”

Approved by the Vestry in August 2001, the Christ Church Mission Statement proclaims us “Followers of Christ: Inspired for mission, sent in His name.”

Christ Church has been integral to life in Greenville since its founding as St. James Mission in the early 1820s. With its unusual brick spire reaching 130 feet skyward, our historic church building has been a treasured downtown landmark since 1854. The Christ Church Parish House has served the Church and community well for more than 40 years as a bustling center of activity and church operations.

The Church works hard to make its programs and services relevant and responsive to people of all ages, interests, circumstances and backgrounds. While all worship services at Christ Church are firmly rooted in the most sacred traditions of the Episcopal Church, the styles of worship vary from the most formal rituals of the Church to more casual services. It is left to each parishioner to determine which style offers the greatest personal meaning and spiritual sustenance.

Many of our most devoted members were born into the Christ Church family, following generations of their ancestors. Many others have come to the Church through other doorways—a coworker’s invitation to a worship service, a choir member’s encouraging a talented friend to audition for our choir, a classmate’s excitement about a Church League basketball game, a neighbor’s search for a fourth player at a PrimeTimers’ bridge game. Once inside the first doorway to Christ Church, prospective disciples encounter many more doorways to discipleship. However the Holy Spirit moves them, they will almost certainly find within Christ Church the information, inspiration and opportunities they need to comprehend and live out their personal missions to serve God.

Christian formation classes at Christ Church address the diverse needs and interests of parishioners of all ages, life stages and interests. Young adults may choose “For 20s and 30s” classes, while CCSingles classes and events are of special interest to single men and women 35 years old and older. Children and young people attend classes based on the Episcopal Curriculum for Youth, a powerfully relevant Sunday School series that builds a solid foundation of knowledge and Christian values, culminating in preparation for confirmation. EYC activities give junior high and high school students opportunities to socialize and take on worthy projects with their peers in a safe, wholesome environment.

The Episcopal Church Women organize and participate in a variety of Bible study classes and service projects, including the popular Annual Bazaar. The men of the Church meet regularly for Bible study and organize their own special events, outreach initiatives and retreats. Small “20:20” groups of men and women meet regularly to learn about the Bible, serve the community through outreach and grow new groups. Adults age 55 and older participate in the PrimeTimers program of study groups, social gatherings, trips and outings.

Christ Church’s four-year Education for Ministry course offers adult parishioners the opportunity for serious, focused study on virtually every aspect of the Episcopal faith and its meaning in their lives. Through the four-part Disciples Class series and the Network process, Christ Church members consider their particular gifts and, guided by introspection, prayer and one-on-one consultation, identify the activities and involvement opportunities most meaningful to them in light of their personal mission, talents and interests.

Some members are called to serve on committees, while others build Habitat houses, visit parishioners in nursing homes, teach Sunday School classes, play in the Brass Ensemble, prepare meals, plant flowers, coach basketball, organize books in the bookstore, sew a pageant costume, say a prayer, or set up a display at the bazaar. These ordinary activities, undertaken by Christ Church parishioners as personal ministries, assume profound meaning and purpose when carried out in Jesus’ name, changing lives and making miracles happen every day.

Opening New Doorways to Discipleship

The growth of Christ Church from a handful of communicants to a congregation approaching 4,000 demonstrates the steadfast discipleship of our parishioners for 176 years. Each of the many worship services, programs, activities and events of Christ Church represents a doorway to discipleship through which others are drawn to enter into the life of the Church. Each life is to be lived as an active, personal mission to serve God. As a church dedicated to Christ’s Great Commission, Christ Church is strengthening its role as a supporter and nurturer of its member-disciples as they seek to make disciples in their many, diverse ways.

One of the most basic means Christ Church has of supporting our disciples is in providing ample, appropriate spaces for worship, learning, fellowship, service and wholesome play. Through the years, as membership has grown and programs have evolved, parishioners have generously supported a series of building and renovation projects, each prompted by specific, mission-related needs. Most recently, the Church’s continuing growth, along with a decision to unify the campus of Christ Church Episcopal School by relocating the Lower School to the Cavalier campus, have prompted a thorough analysis of immediate and future space requirements to support the program and mission of Christ Church.

Over the past four years, based on countless hours of thought, discussion and prayerful consideration of responses to a parish-wide survey, the Christ Church clergy, staff, and dozens of parishioners serving on the Vestry and relevant committees have identified and developed plans to satisfy our most pressing facilities needs. Although crowding during our most popular worship services has led some parishioners to believe we need more room for worship, Building Committee members have determined our worship space is adequate for a maximum average Sunday attendance of 1,500. Currently, Sunday services attract an average of about 1,000 worshipers. As attendance approaches the agreed-upon maximum, the Master Plan for Christ Church calls on us to plant one or more new mission churches. Meanwhile, what Christ Church needs most urgently are larger and better-suited facilities for a number of important programs and activities.

For example, a substantial portion of our congregation is comprised of young, growing families. Staffed by professionals and parent-volunteers, the Christ Church Nursery provides loving care for their newborns and toddlers, allowing parents to worship and participate in other Church activities. At the time we built our nursery, it offered more than adequate space for the infants and toddlers in our Church. With the steady increase among our members of young families, however, our nursery is now too small.

The Christ Church Episcopal Preschool is a self-supporting outreach ministry started in 1986 as Mothers’ Morning Out. As the program evolved into a full-service preschool, the Christ Church program earned a reputation for excellent quality. The program quickly reached full enrollment of 100 children and has remained at capacity ever since. Currently, about 70 children’s names are on the preschool waiting list—many added as newborns by Church members who hope a space will open by the time their children reach age two and are old enough to enroll.

The Mothers’ Morning Out program continues as a separate, self-supporting morning preschool program serving 90 children from eight weeks to two years old, with a waiting list of approximately 45.

Christ Church uses Finlay Hall for a variety of purposes, including what has been called our single largest mission, basketball for children and youth. Basketball opens a doorway through which 300 of our young people come to church regularly and interact as part of a fun-loving, Church-centered peer group supervised by caring adults. Many of our teenaged members have grown and played together on Christ Church teams since kindergarten. The program has attracted more than its share of young families to membership in Christ Church, effectively making disciples of our young players and empowering them to make disciples of their parents, siblings and friends. The Christ Church Basketball Program has flourished despite the fact that the court in Finlay Hall is 12 to 15 feet smaller than regulation size, limiting its value for practice and making it unsuitable for games with competitors. There is no seating for spectators, and all our games against competing teams must be played in the competitors’ full-sized gymnasiums.

Infants, toddlers, preschoolers and school-aged basketball players are not the only Christ School constituencies presently under-served by our facilities. Parishioners of all ages are increasingly likely to find classrooms and meeting rooms too few and too small for the groups using them. Church musicians prepare for services in uncomfortably cramped quarters with poor acoustics. Even after recent renovations, teenage participants in EYC (Episcopal Youth Community) meetings still call their crowded downstairs meeting place “the dungeon.” Members whose mobility is limited wish for more convenient parking and easier access to our buildings.

The mission of Christ Church is not now, nor has it ever been, to build buildings. As “Followers of Christ: Inspired for mission, sent in His name,” we do need buildings adequate to support our programs and activities now and as we continue to grow.

In response to the urgent needs of the preschool and Mothers’ Morning Out programs, the Church nursery, the basketball program, Christian formation classes and the music program, and to support the continuing growth of Christ Church and its members’ ambitions toward ever-growing service to God, the Vestry contracted with Neal Prince + Partners Architects to develop comprehensive renovation and construction plans.

The programming and planning by the architects makes the best possible use of existing interior space while placing proposed new construction at the best possible sites on our beautiful, historic campus. Through a carefully planned series of renovations and additions to the Parish House, construction of a new Parish Life Center, and purchase of several lots on the campus block, Christ Church will bring its facilities to the level needed to support and sustain Church programs and activities now and for the foreseeable future.

Parish House Renovations and Additions – $8,424,771

The Parish House has served Christ Church well for more than four decades. In addition to providing space for classes, offices, meeting, dining, music rehearsals, reading and studying, the Parish House is home to our library, bookstore, nursery, preschool and, until June 2002, the Lower School of Christ Church Episcopal School.

The Lower School has relocated, and Christ Church plans to renovate and reconfigure existing space throughout the Parish House and to add approximately 28,000 square feet, bringing the total Parish House space to 80,000 square feet. With the existing renovations and planned additions, Christ Church will substantially enlarge the space available in the Parish House.

In the area vacated by the Lower School, plans call for reconfiguring classrooms, faculty workrooms and the kitchen to create a number of larger classrooms and other rooms suitable for a variety of Church programs and activities. The bookstore will be renovated and enlarged, and a corridor will be provided for more convenient access to McCall Parlor. Finlay Hall will also be renovated, with special attention devoted to screening traffic noise and improving interior acoustics to make the hall more suitable for concerts, meetings and conversations at large gatherings.

Included in the renovated and expanded Parish House will be a new Christ Church Pastoral Care Center where parishioners can meet privately with clergy and lay counselors to discuss personal concerns and receive spiritual guidance. While the Church has offered pastoral counseling for many years, the program has suffered limitations because available space has been less than ideal. The new space will be adjacent to the offices of clergy involved in pastoral ministry, with a private entrance and waiting room situated well away from high traffic areas. Parishioners who may have been reluctant to seek help because of privacy concerns will be much more comfortable coming to the new Counseling Center.

The new preschool addition has nine classrooms, each with its own restroom, as well as a large area for indoor play. The existing Mothers’ Morning Out/Nursery space will be refurbished and integrated with a spacious new addition along Washington Street. Once the two additions are complete, children on the current waiting lists for the preschool program and Mothers’ Morning Out will have greater access to the services they need, with ample space to meet anticipated continuing demand in the foreseeable future. There will also be ample room in the Christ Church Nursery to accommodate our infants and toddlers.

For the young people of Christ Church, the preschool addition’s upper level has six classrooms, a spacious combination game room-classroom and a large meeting room. EYC activities will no longer be relegated to “the dungeon.” The second floor of the existing Parish House will provide refurbished space for adults’ and children’s Sunday School classes and Church business offices. Musicians of all ages will rehearse in renovated and enlarged second-floor rooms, with ample storage nearby for Christ Church’s extensive music library.

In designing the additions to the Parish House, the architects have skillfully provided the additional space our programs so desperately need in a substantially enlarged structure that still balances well with our historic church building. A two-story lobby at the heart of the Parish House will be a natural hub for the many activities taking place in the facility. In inclement weather, parishioners will especially appreciate the new sheltered drive-through entrance included in the plans for the Parish Hall. Older parishioners—particularly those with mobility problems—will find the enlarged, reconfigured Parish Hall to be easily accessible from the parking lot and throughout the interior.

Throughout the existing Parish House building, mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems will be upgraded or replaced, bathrooms will be renovated, sprinklers, energy efficient windows and a new roof will be installed, vastly improving the condition, safety and function of the 1960s-vintage portions of the enlarged Parish House structure.

The planned renovations and additions to the Parish House will cost an estimated $8,424,771. The first phase of renovation is expected to begin in spring 2003.

Parish Life Center – $2,723,452

While the refurbished and expanded Parish House will solve a number of problems for a variety of Christ Church programs, other critical needs for program space remain. In particular, our basketball players and their coaches still need a regulation-sized basketball court in which to practice and host games. As our membership has grown and continues to do so, the entire Church will greatly benefit from additional large, multi-purpose space for assemblies, meetings, classes and banquets.

The new Parish Life Center at Christ Church will feature a regulation sized basketball court, with roll-out bleachers for parents and friends who want to watch a practice or cheer Christ Church teams to victory. The entrance to the center features an octagonal-shaped lobby opening into a broad corridor leading to the gym. Off the main corridor are a large assembly room, restrooms and an office. Just off the assembly room is storage space and a warming kitchen which also opens into the gym for convenient food service during large group meals. The assembly room will have a folding partition so the space can be easily subdivided. Groups too large for the assembly room can use the gym for a variety of classes, meetings, conferences, rallies and other gatherings requiring a large, open indoor space.

A group of PrimeTimers might have a line dancing class in the gym. With the addition of volleyball and badminton nets, EYC participants can enjoy fellowship and fun while developing their athletic skills. Families enjoying an outdoor event can easily move into the gym during a rainstorm. As our congregation continues to grow, the Parish Life Center gymnasium could become an ideal setting for alternative Sunday morning services, held concurrently with services in the church, for young families and others who prefer less formal worship.

With the new basketball court complete, the renovated Finlay Hall can be better used for a variety of purposes by parishioners of all ages. Scheduling conflicts with basketball practice will be eliminated, freeing significant, freshly renovated space for plays by the Theatre Ministry, pot luck suppers for Christ Church Singles, an intergenerational dinner-dance, a concert by the Cherub Choir—any activity or event that needs space the size of an almost-regulation basketball court.

The Parish Life Center will cost $2,723,452. Construction will begin in 2004.

Central Energy Plant – $966,777

To power the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems for the expanded Parish House and the new Parish Life Center, a central energy plant will be built near the corner of Broadus Avenue and Pettigru Street. A single system serving both buildings represents the most cost- and space-efficient means of heating and cooling the two structures. By locating the energy plant structure on a small strip along one edge of the southeast corner parking lot, we preserve prime space along Washington Street without detracting from the beauty and historic character of our buildings.

Having the energy plant in a separate structure some distance from the buildings will also reduce indoor noise and facilitate access for system maintenance and repairs. Since the new central energy plant will need to be complete before the renovation of the Parish House, construction will begin in early 2003.

The new central energy plant for the Parish House and the Parish Life Center will cost $966,777.

Property Purchase – $525,000

Until 1918, Christ Church owned the entire block on which the Church and its buildings and cemetery are situated. However, a series of decisions in the 1900s and 1910s led to the sale of portions of the property. Between 1906 and 1914, in an effort to create a steady source of operating income, the Church built five rental houses along Washington Street. Disappointed by the return on their investment, the Vestry decided in 1918 to sell four of the houses and lots. At the time, a few parishioners opposed the sale, but immediate financial needs prevailed over visions of the long-term future.

In 1949, the Church bought back one of the lots. This year, the Church contracted to buy three more lots. As remaining properties become available in the coming years, Christ Church hopes eventually to reclaim the entire block. With the campus complete, Christ Church will enjoy the greatest possible flexibility and control over our property while reclaiming space for parking, play or new programs.

The purchase of property will cost $525,000.

Tithe for Outreach – $1,425,000

The Ladies’ Sewing Circle of Christ Church, organized in 1870, used money they made selling their handiwork to buy Sunday School books, a melodeon in a redwood case, carpeting, a chandelier and, most significantly, a new parish house for their church. They also gave a tithe of their profits to local missions and charities. In like spirit, the Vestry now calls for the Church to allocate an amount equal to ten percent of all funds pledged to the Campaign as a tithe for outreach. The tithe will support existing community service programs and might also be used to support new and expanding programs made possible by our refurbished and enlarged facilities.

Based on the projected total needed for the building program, the purchase of property, and campaign expenses, the tithe will equal $1,425,000.

The ‘Doorways to Discipleship’ Campaign

To raise the funds needed for the new construction and extensive renovations to the Parish House, the construction of the new Parish Life Center, the construction of the central energy plant, and for the purchase of adjacent properties the Vestry has approved a major capital campaign, which will also include a tithe for outreach of the total amount pledged. The campaign, named “Doorways to Discipleship: Disciples Making Disciples for Jesus Christ,” will be conducted in 2002 and 2003 under the leadership of former Senior Warden Cecil Nelson. The total cost of the projects and programs to be funded by the campaign will be an estimated $14,250,000,00.

In meeting the Church’s urgent needs for more and better space and its commitment to outreach, the “Doorways to Discipleship” campaign will affirm the rich diversity of our members as they follow their individual pathways to Jesus Christ. The campaign represents an exceptional opportunity for our members to acknowledge and support the personal missions of their fellow members of all ages, talents and interests. With the projects completed, Christ Church will be fully prepared to accommodate all our programs and activities as we continue to grow.

Campaign volunteers will encourage every active family and individual member of Christ Church to participate generously in the “Doorways to Discipleship” campaign by making pledges to the campaign which can be paid over a five-year pledge period.

Your Response

As members of Christ Church, we have most solemnly and reverently committed ourselves to be “Followers of Christ: Inspired for mission, Sent in His name.” Our Church is thriving, and our membership growing. Miracles are occurring and lives are being transformed every day as our disciples make disciples.

The projects and priorities supported by the “Doorways to Discipleship” campaign are essential to our continuing ability to fulfill the shared mission of Christ Church. With your gift to the campaign, you will open doorways to Christ Church for preschoolers on waiting lists, for basketball players who will at last enjoy the home court advantage during a tournament, for adults who need a classroom in which to study a particular topic in Sunday School, for choir members who want to practice in suitable space, for actors who want to present a play, for young parents whose infants and toddlers need to be cared for during worship services, for single adults who want to share fellowship and a meal.

As Paul wrote in Chapter 12 of I Corinthians, there are diversities of gifts, all given by the same spirit, comprising the body of Christ. “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body being many, are one body; so also is Christ.”

For nearly two centuries, the many members of Christ Church have been good and faithful servants who have, both individually and as a body, given generously and tirelessly of their many, diverse talents. As we embark on the “Doorways to Discipleship” campaign, we urge you to consider the urgent needs the campaign addresses and, with your generous commitment to the campaign, to affirm their vital importance to the mission Christ Church.

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