The Gathering Place, as it’s beginning to be known, is progressing along very nicely according to the folks at Cunningham UMC in Palmyra. “We’re real excited about the new facility,” said Pastor Tom Frost. “We’ve penciled in Sunday, February 10th as its Dedication Sunday.” The new building will have a large fellowship hall, a wonderful kitchen, two classrooms and handicapped-accessible bathrooms, as well as a nice storage area underneath.
The Cunningham congregation began saving for the new facility years ago, but finally wanted to move forward despite not having all the funds in hand. They reached out to the Development Company, which approved a construction loan so they could begin the building.
“It was a very straight-forward process and Randy Shelton provided good guidance as we worked through the loan,” said Finance Chair Richard Payne. “We got competitive bids from local banks, but in the end, we decided that we’d be more comfortable working with fellow Methodists…. and we’re glad we did.”
In a few years, Cunningham hopes to embark on the next phase of their master plan for the church which dates back to the 1830’s. They plan to extend and renovate the sanctuary (while preserving their beautiful stained glass windows), add some additional rows of seating, build a new narthex, and build a covered walkway between the church and the Gathering Place. Should they need it, DevCo looks forward to helping them.