Rev. Alison J. Buttrick Patton, pastor, and Alex Floyd Marshall, associate pastor, just sent this wonderful note to members and friends of the Saugatuck Congregational Church:
Joyful greetings to you on this Christmas Eve!
Today, two long anticipated events converge: the birth of the Christ Child and our return to our restored church at 245 Post Road East.
The anticipation is palpable; we imagine all the joy and wonder associated with every Christmas Eve, magnified by our return to a sanctuary that is, for many of us, brimming with memories of Christmases past.
Of course, there will also be folks worshipping in this space for the very first time, including your pastors! Whether you are a first-time guest, newer member or returning after years away, you will recognize the work that has been poured into rebuilding Saugatuck Church over the last three years.
Many historic details of the building have been lovingly restored. We have also made changes to enhance our use of the space, improve accessibility, and support our unfolding ministries.
As with any move, our settling in will take time. We joyfully open our house for worship this Christmas Eve, but note that the building is not finished; there is yet work to do.
That’s OK. We are all works in progress….
So, with deep gratitude to those who have worked tirelessly to make this return possible, including the members of our building team, contributors to our capital campaign, countless volunteers, faithful members – those who have labored, contributed and prayed on our behalf – we are delighted to say: Join us!…
See you tonight, in our star-studded sanctuary.
(Rev. Patton notes that the church — shut since a pre-Thanksgiving fire 3 years ago — hopes to welcome back various community partners who use their space sometime during the 1st quarter of 2015. A community-wide re-dedication worship and celebration is set for Sunday, March 8. There is still work to be done — but it will be done, finally, back at “home.” Merry Christmas indeed!)