Journey House Renovations
The year was 2009. Barack Obama was beginning his first term as President. Pilot Chesley Sullenberger safely landed the fully loaded Flight 1549 in a river in what became known as the Miracle on the Hudson, and the Steelers won yet another Super Bowl. A little closer to home, 2009 is the year we installed the elevator at church and purchased what is now a grass field below Hillside Lane. It is also the year we purchased from “The Colonel,” a colorful neighbor who had built the house some years ago, the home we now call Journey House.
The vision at that time was to convert the house into primarily a youth facility, but also create a space that other groups would find appealing. A phenomenal amount of work and expense was committed to the effort, resulting in a welcoming space for our youth as well as a space for personal retreats, leadership team meetings, staff retreats, birthday parties, Christmas parties, baby showers, wedding showers, and numerous family reunions. A facility just off Lititz Pike, yet somewhat remote and sharing a border with Landis Woods Park added to the appeal. As you might imagine, the use and the years conspired to create a facility that was feeling a bit worn, tired, and dated.
With a renewed vision and purpose, Lowell Jantzi was empowered to move ahead with the needed renovations. But first things first: a persistent roof leak needed to be addressed. That was taken care of last year, allowing interior work to move ahead. On February 18 many of you gathered to help with the removal of floor covering, fixtures, worn furniture, and equipment.
Then the work of rebuilding began. Lowell, with the expert assistance of Bob Bear and Jay Peifer, oversaw the entire project from the day of demolition straight through to the final last-minute punch-list items. A big thank-you to Lynn Godshall for selecting the lighting fixtures and releasing the Interior Design Team to do their work. That team, led by Karen Schneider, included Linda Dowd, Jeané Hershey, Rhoda Snider, and Nancy Wissler. Together they endured the frustration of out-of-stock floor covering (twice!) while celebrating the enjoyment they were found in working together. They made all the selections from the big items like paint color and floor covering to the fine details like art for the walls, waste cans, and soap dispensers. The result is a beautiful ministry facility poised to welcome all sorts of gatherings. Once again it is ready to be the site for everything from corporate team meetings to family gatherings.
So, thank you to you, who back in 2009 agreed to purchase and renovate this facility. The vision and ministry live on. Of course, continuing the vision comes with a financial cost, and everything is more expensive in 2023 than it was in 2009. If you’d like to help in covering the cost, a donation tagged “Journey House” may be made to the church at any time.
Today (May 7, 2023), after the church service, you have the opportunity to see firsthand the results of many hours of labor. Walk through the facility, talk with those most involved in its transformation, and pray. Pray for our youth who will resume meeting here. Pray for Casa de Amor y Misericordia, the church that meets here every Sunday, and pray for the numerous people that will find themselves attending an event here. Pray for those who oversee the cleaning and upkeep of this and all our facilities. Pray most of all that we will continue to find ways to use this facility, this tool, to build a community that points to Christ.