For those who have been with the congregation for more than 3 years, you certainly remember Faith On Grove. For years, while our Main Street church was bursting at the seams, Grove was a great place for Faith Lutheran Youth, Sunday evening services, and Sunday school classes. The church building was sold in April of 2010 to help fund the building expansion and to bring all of these activities back to Main Street.
Do you know how the building and its new congregation are faring?
The Hutchinson Church of God moved into the building in April 2010. The Church of God is member of the Minnesota State Conference of the Churches of God and the Church of God General Conference (Abrahamic Faith). The Hutchinson congregation has approximately 70 active members, and they have found Grove Street to be a great permanent home for their active congregation. They have seen some moderate growth in attendance and membership since their move. They have one Sunday service, Sunday School, and a Wednesday Youth Group called Bereans (named after people from Berea in the book of Acts). Since the move, they have conducted one wedding in the church. They also have an active outreach program that involves mailing CDs or tapes of the sermon to interested parties, many of them out of state.
House of Worship
Before the Hutchinson Church of God purchased the building from Faith Lutheran, they had been meeting for over 8 years in the cafeteria of West Elementary school. For each Sunday service, members had to set up chairs, haul and setup the audio/visual system and then promptly tear down at the end of each service. They have been working on improvements ever since. They have done a lot of painting, installed new carpet, put new chairs in the sanctuary, and have remodeled the stage.
Some of the monuments from our tenancy remain. The old piano from downstairs now has a prominent role in the front of the sanctuary. The former FOG nursery is now used for Sunday School, but the colorful paint job remains. The rear projection TV that our youth used for Xbox is still there, too, along with the old pool table and foosball table.
In the spring shortly after their purchase, members found water in the basement. Plumbers were hired to root out the drain, and unfortunately the cleaning of the pipes allowed more water to back flow into the basement. It turned out that a downstream sanitary sewer line was clogged and that raw sewage backed up into the basement of the church. The City then had to clear out the downstream sewer to stop the backflow. Extensive cleanup was required and most of the wood and the flooring in the basement had to be replaced. This small congregation persevered and has really made some nice improvements in the space.
It is wonderful to see God’s work continue to thrive in a place that many in our congregation considered a church home (or at least a church home away from home).
If you want further information about the Hutchinson Church of God, check out their website here.
Thanks to Faith Lutheran’s Discipleship Team, and especially Brian Wright, for putting this piece together!