Cornerstone for the Future
In 2013, Bethesda embarked on a process of discernment and discovery that has led to plans for both a New Parish House and the restoration of our historic church building. As designed, the two facilities will be adjacent to each other and connected by a loggia and courtyard, in the tradition of Gothic Revival design.
Dozens of parishioners have participated in the planning and development process over more than two years. The leadership of Dean Vang, Wardens, Vestry and others has been inspired by the Gospel imperative to be good stewards of the resources God has provided (Matthew: 25), to reach out to the community in service, and to provide a welcoming place for Christian worship. Together, these new and renewed facilities will be Bethesda’s “Cornerstone for the Future.”
In 2013, nearly 20 discernment meetings were held homes and at church, at which members described their vision for Bethesda’s future. The record of those meetings is in the “Capital Planning and Discernment Record 2013”.
As conceived, our New Parish House will include space for week-day early childhood education and child care, as well as room for other human service groups and private consulting firms. The rental income will help offset the costs of debt service and operations, and fulfill the parish’s desire to engage more actively with the Saratoga Springs community.
In 2014, the existing Parish House and Rectory were sold to the firm redeveloping the Adelphi Hotel on Broadway. A third property is under sale contract, set to close in late 2015. Proceeds from these transactions will go toward the new facilities, plus a new Rectory when required.
From 2014 through 2015, the Building Committee has coordinated the activities of the Parish Architect, John G. Waite Associates, Architects, of Albany, NY. The committee, in its advisory capacity to the Vestry, has also conducted competitive procurements for financing, restoration and other services. The committee prepared an application and was successful in securing a grant from the New York Landmarks Conservancy to undertake a condition assessment of the church building in order to set priorities for restoration measures.
A great deal of work has taken place, but much more will be needed to bring these projects to reality.
Current design images of the New Parish House may be found here.
Minutes of Building Committee meetings are available here.
Questions about these projects, as well as the Capital Campaign, may be directed to Dean Vang, or to any member of the Building Committee: Gordon Boyd, chair, Mary Withington, Mark Claverie, Darren Miller, Mark Parobeck, Geoffrey Delbridge, Mark Anspach and Field Horne.