The Farmers Market @ St. Stephen's, our Sunday Community Suppers, our visiting speakers and poets, and other ministries at St. Stephen's Church all contribute to our mission to serve as a "village green" for the community. We want to extend a welcome to all, whether they are members of St. Stephen's, members of another faith community, or not affiliated at all. This is a reclaiming of the role the church has played through the centuries, with "parishes" actually being geographic areas for which the local parish church took a sense of responsibility.
For the past year, staff and volunteers have been discussing a vision for a new village green ministry: a gathering spot for youth and their friends before and after school, as well as for adults and families to come before and after services and events at St. Stephen's.
A project team has been meeting since the summer of 2016 and recently selected Baskervill, a well-regarded local architecture firm, to provide a design for this cafe space (the former choir room at the Three Chopt end of the parish house).
Members of the project team discussed the vision and showed Baskervill's designs during the Sunday Forum on March 26. You can listen to that presentation, as well as to the questions asked, here. We've also got an FAQ sheet. In addition, the project team has offered a dozen Q&A sessions in the space proposed for the cafe.
A generous gift from an anonymous donor provided initial funding of $30,000. When combined with pledges and gifts raised over the past six weeks, we now have commitments totalling $120,000. The project team calculates that they will need to raise at least $35,000 more by May 30.
It is essential that your gift to the café not affect the fulfillment of your pledge to the annual giving campaign.
(Read a message from a St. Stephen's parent about why her family is excited about this new opportunity.)
Michael Sweeney, Director of Family Ministry // email // 804.288.2867