I am a big believer in summer projects around the parish. With the schedule a little lighter and a little less going on it’s the perfect opportunity to clean things up and clean things out. If we’re going to do any repairs, replacements, or construction, summertime is definitely the time to do it. I also think it’s attractive and fun for people, who have perhaps been away during the summer months, to return to campus and find improvements and upgrades. Here’s an overview of what we’re up to in the summer of 2022:
Clean Up/Clean Out
A summertime tradition around here is cleaning out closets and storage spaces on-site and off-site. As I have written about often, I honestly believe that a major stumbling block for a lot of parishes is simply the junk that accrues over the course of even a single year. A yearly clean-out guards against this problem. Our team targets each space, reevaluating what’s being stored and if it’s worth keeping. Questionable items go into “purgatory” for a period of time where they can be rescued if they are indeed desired or needed. Otherwise, they eventually get given away, sold or simply junked.
Next-Gen Summer Cleaning
Kids and students can be hard on facilities and summertime is the perfect time to really get into those spaces to renew and refresh them for the fall return of programs. Included in this project will be deep cleaning, floor waxing, painting, and repairs.
After the opening of our new sanctuary in 2017 we began using the original sanctuary for kids and student programs, rebranding it as the “theatre.” Last summer we were finally able to get around to undertaking the technology installations we’ve had in mind from the first. This included 3 large LED screens, a new sound system, and a significant upgrade to our lighting program.
This summer we are going to be undertaking a much simpler project which is really just about cosmetic improvements, especially dry walling and painting. Arguably the most unattractive feature of the space was the brown brick walls. These will largely disappear giving the space a cleaner, more contemporary look. Take a look this fall when the project is complete.
We have always recognized the need for wayfinding signage in our building and on our campus. It’s just one of those projects that has taken us a long time to get around to. Last summer we handled the interior wayfinding signs and this summer we’re trying to push forward with exterior signage, including a smartly updated Ridgely Road monument sign that better reflects our architecture. This project must go to Baltimore County for necessary approvals, and they, not us, will determine when we can move forward. We’ll keep you posted.
New Church Punch List
During the new church construction project, there was much negotiation and compromise to get the project done on time and on budget. In the process many things that we might have wanted to do were left undone…but not forgotten.
We have finally gotten around to remote-controlled window shades on the Concourse and in the Vision Café. Because the afternoon sun shines directly in those areas the shades soften the effect and make for a much more pleasant experience.
To complete the liturgical design in the sanctuary of the Church we will be adding a processional cross and candles, designed by ALBL of Germany (who designed all the existing liturgical pieces). These are currently in shipment.
The project I am most excited about this summer regards some enhanced lighting in the church ambulatory (the back of the church). Specifically, the Stations of the Cross, which though beautiful, are not really properly illuminated. We’ll be adding spotlights to each of the stations, making them dramatically more prominent by bathing them in light. After this installation, their presence will definitely impact the experience of the sanctuary in a prayerful and really beautiful way.