Governing Board Recommendation

logo only.JPG

GOVERNING BOARD RECOMMENDATION to the Congregation of St. Matthew Lutheran Church

NewPlaceMoreSpaceSameGrace1.jpg

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

God has richly blessed our St. Matthew Lutheran Church from its beginning and ever since. We praise Him and thank Him with grateful hearts!

Guests and new members often say something like this:

"I felt at home right away with all of you, like with family. You can just feel the love and warmth."

What a joy to be part of God’s family here!

You’ll remember some months ago the Governing Board took a survey of our congregation. One question asked, “What do you think is our greatest challenge in ministry today?” The overwhelming response was we need more space for ministryMore space for grace! This has happened time and again since St. Matthew was formed. It’s fitting for a congregation named and founded on Jesus’ words to “Go and tell… Go and make disciples… Baptize… Go and teach…”


Call our number one challenge what it is: Cause for joy!


Did you know that right now in the United States 100-200 congregations close their doors each week? Church members are leaving at an unprecedented rate and churches are closing. Yet our Lord has seen fit to bless our ministry at St. Matthew with a growing body of believers. We are immersed in a rich “mission field” with all the new houses, apartments and buildings rising in our community.

St. Matthew got its start in 1995, when 30 mission-minded Lutheran Christians saw the opportunity for Gospel mission in this area, sold Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church in Sacramento and moved to a small space on Washington Blvd. near the Placer County Fairgrounds. By God’s grace, this new church family grew and already by 2000, we needed more space. We then moved to a much larger space down the street — around the corner from the Placer County jail—and the Lord continued to add daily to our number, just as in Acts.

Before long St. Matthew once again needed more space for ministry, so members prayed for guidance and stepped out in faith to purchase our current property. At the time its location seemed remote with vacant lots in all directions, yet we remained one in faith and trusted the Holy Spirit would move the hearts of members and bring forth funds to construct a building.

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. (2 Corinthians 9:6)

In 2008, we moved into our new building on Lonetree Blvd. in Rocklin. The space seemed huge at the time and most members predicted, “It will never be filled up, not even for one worship service.” Once again, the Lord surprised us and by 2013, we were using every corner of the building.

AttendanceGraph.jpg

So here we are in 2018, and God continues to bring people to St. Matthew. As from the beginning we are one in faith in Jesus our Savior, saved by grace!

Just as a growing family needs a bigger house, we have an acute need for more space.

BigFamilyClipart.jpg

For example, start by walking through our front office and notice there’s no room to spare, with Becca Bills’ desk, plus an extra small computer desk, the copier and boxes of supplies filling it up. Pastor Brad’s office is small — and used for all sorts of other needs including various classes on Sunday mornings. DCE Matt Molinari and Melissa Carr work with different age groups yet must share cramped office space that doubles as storage.
On Sunday mornings, one small room is all we have for adult Bible study, which limits the number of participants. Our choir must put on their robes next to the copier in our office. Especially for the 9:30 a.m. worship service, we need more room for seating in our sanctuary and more room for passing in the hallway. Our Children’s church needs separate rooms so kindergartners needn’t be taught along with 4th graders. Middle school students end up meeting outdoors or try to find an unoccupied open space. Little ones fill our nursery space.

We need a family restroom and larger restrooms that are ADA compliant, so those in wheelchairs and walkers can move about while a parent is caring for their infant. Parking? Not enough parking spaces, especially around the 9:30 a.m. worship service. There never seem to be enough spaces for those with wheelchairs or walkers or other challenges.

In short, we are maxed out on space — and it’s all cause to praise God!

In January, several people met Sam Song, a consultant who attended all four St. Matthew worship services. His company has worked with hundreds of churches across the USA, finding ways to squeeze more space out of a facility as an alternative to construction. Sam fell in love with the people he met here and clearly felt the welcoming environment and grace that shines through. He confirmed we’ve done everything possible to remodel our existing rooms to try and find more space. He also observed we’re pushing Pastor Brad’s limits by adding additional worship times to accommodate our growth.

Now, it seems God is opening the door for St. Matthew to be on the move again.

We continue to follow Jesus by making disciples just as we set out to do from the beginning. Eight months ago we formed the Space Committee to investigate possibilities and propose workable options to create additional space. The Space Committee completed their exhaustive, thorough examination of many potential solutions and presented the possibilities to the Governing Board.

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather,in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others. (Philippians 2:3-4)

The Governing Board spent many hours reviewing options and the information from the Space Committee. One of the viable options the Space Committee discovered in their evaluation was a building for sale less than 2 miles from us. After a lot of earnest prayer and discussion we unanimously endorsed a recommendation to purchase this building and sell our  current property.

We sincerely believe buying this building is the best use of the gifts God has given us for the following reasons:

1.jpg

With triple the square footage of our current building we will have the space for staff, adult Bible study, children/youth ministry, choir and many other ministries as God calls our church to serve Him! We can’t wait to show you video footage of this building! It has the same light and bright feel of our current space and so much more.

2.jpg

The cost to buy this building is much more affordable than adding onto our current space. By purchasing the new space, we will save a substantial amount of money. This means instead of having our funds tied up in paying a mortgage for a new addition that would still not meet all our needs, we will instead have additional money for ministry.

3.jpg

And most importantly we believe that this decision best aligns with our mission to make disciples in the context in which God has placed us.

Please note that over the next several weeks we’ll be doing our best to communicate clearly to all of you, our St. Matthew family, the factors we considered before coming together to put before you this recommendation.

The members of the Board truly understand this recommendation may come as a surprise to many of you. You may be confident we have taken our time and prayed and wrestled with all the factors of the proposed move. We, too, have had to work through the emotions of what we are proposing.

Please know we’re excited that this building became available. 

It offers us what we all agree we need most: Space. Space we cannot have in our present building. Space to create a welcoming environment. Ample parking, with lots of disabled person parking spaces close to the building. Space to expand St. Matthew’s ministry to members of all ages — and to our community.

It will be a new place with more space, but the same grace.

St. Matthew Lutheran Church is not our present building — nor any building. Together in faith, we are the church, the people of God, the St. Matthew family of Lutheran Christians, redeemed by grace through Jesus Christ, our Savior. All glory and praise to His Name!

You’ll be receiving more information over the next several weeks and will be able to ask questions. We Board members pray you will faithfully, prayerfully consider this new step in ministry which God has put before us. How blessed we are that although membership is shrinking in most churches in America, Jesus Christ has seen fit to grow us and use us.
What a joy to have such decisions to make!

Your fellow servants in Christ,

You are welcome to email the Governing Board with any questions at the-board@StMatthewRocklin.com

Learn more about the Governing Board’s Recommendation

MONDAY, JUNE 25

6:00 - 7:00pm in the Sanctuary at St. Matthew

Informational Meeting: The Process and Reasoning for the Recommendation

MONDAY, JULY 9

6:00 - 7:00pm in the Sanctuary at St. Matthew

Informational Meeting: Vision and Use for New Space

SATURDAY, JULY 21

3:00 - 4:00pm at the kiosk in the Narthex at St. Matthew

More Informational Available: Summary of Recommendation

SUNDAY, JULY 22

9:00 - 11:00am at the kiosk in the Narthex at St. Matthew

More Informational Available: Summary of Recommendation

SATURDAY, JULY 28

3:00 - 4:00pm in the Sanctuary at St. Matthew

*** VOTERS MEETING ***

NewPlaceMoreSpaceSameGrace2.jpg