This season Green Lake Presbyterian Church is following our parents’ footsteps to provide a gospel home for us, our city, and the future. Our new 35,000 square foot building is located just two miles away in Ballard, includes a gym, larger sanctuary, full industrial kitchen, and 27 classrooms. Legacy: The Gift of Home is a time of heart preparation, thanksgiving, and fundraising. Above and beyond gifts from our members, alumni, and friends will be used to complete the purchase and conduct renovations. Please join us in joyful anticipation of the work God will do!
Legacy: The Gift of Home
Green Lake Presbyterian Church has a rich and beautiful spiritual tradition—a strong legacy approaching 80 years of continuous, faithful gospel proclamation. We have contributed to the welfare of the city, planted churches, sent missionaries, and discipled the nations. God has been gracious and his people have been faithful.
Integral to this kingdom work have been multiple generations who have lived and given beyond themselves. They possessed the foresight to not only inherit the gifts of the past, but to build upon and expand those foundations for the future. Of course, this too is from the Lord. As the psalmist declares,
“One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.” Psalm 145:4
In 1960, to meet the needs of a burgeoning community, a group of thoughtful, visionary people bought a plot of land on the southwest corner of Seattle’s Green Lake neighborhood and built the facility we now enjoy. It was a gift—a legacy—that has enabled decades of fruitful gospel ministry.
So, the question is this: What story will we tell? What mighty acts will we declare to future generations?
We find ourselves at a pivotal time in the life of our community. God’s kindness continues, and once again Green Lake has grown spiritually and numerically. We must now consider how we will steward that grace.
This is Legacy...
A season of growth
In the last five years, Green Lake has matured from one service of 175 people to three services of nearly 450 people and counting. A growing segment of this number is children. Since 2009, approximately 125 children have been born at Green Lake, nearly 1.25 a month.
As a result of this growth, like any expanding family, we have exhausted the usefulness of our “starter” home. We lack adequate worship and fellowship facilities, rooms for children and adult education, as well as sufficient meeting and office spaces. Not only have these constraints made “everyday” living difficult, but they’ve also prohibited essential ministry initiatives vital to fulfilling our mission and core values.
God calls his people to not only consider their own needs, but also the needs of their neighbors. Scripture exhorts us to “Seek the welfare of the city…and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” Jeremiah 29:7
Seattle is the fastest-growing big city in America. Nearly 21,000 people—57 per day—moved into the city between July 1, 2015, and July 1, 2016. Our neighbors have come to influence industry, shape culture, and enjoy the riches of the Northwest’s natural landscapes.
Within this beauty and goodness, however, is staggering gospel need. Seattle represents the 9th-largest unchurched and 4th-largest de-churched population in the country. Similar research suggests 50% of Seattleites self-identify as post-Christian, possessing no Christian memory or influence.
Despite these alarming statistics, we are confident the gospel addresses all human need. The heart is restless until it rests in God. What if our home became their home? A place of welcome, hospitality, and rest amid life’s chaos. Historically, churches have served this function: a unique blessing of communal life, pastoral activity, missionary work, local focus, educational function, and economic importance. As one noted pastor commented, “A church building should be a community center with worship space.”
A new home
We now face a similar opportunity as that of previous generations. We can build a home not only suitable for our needs but for the life of the city as well.
A new home where the gospel becomes incarnate through a new legacy of mission, people, and ministry.
We believe we’ve found such a place. Located 1.8 miles from our current facility, Trinity United United Methodist Church is a 90 year-old, historic building situated in the heart of Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood. The building itself is over 35,000 sq ft, seats upwards of 350, and boasts 27 classrooms, a full gym, as well as many additional amenities suited for our growing congregation.
This will allow us to expand our ministry reach. The facility currently houses a robust ministry to people experiencing homelessness, including a weekly soup kitchen and a nightly men’s warming shelter. We could have space for additional partnerships with the city, local schools, and arts endeavors, as well as income-generating relationships with private preschools, schools, counseling centers, and summer camps.
We anticipate a purchase price of approximately $6.1M and believe we will need to commit an additional $2.4M for immediate and long-term renovations.
In order to fund this project, we must raise $2M in gifts or pledges to be paid over the next three years.
Our 2015 Seeds Initiative taught us the joy and privilege of generosity. The gospel teaches us that we serve a generous God who has fully given himself to us at the great expense of his Son. The Apostle Paul reminds us that biblical generosity is not the result of coercion or manipulation, but grace (1 Cor. 8 and 9). When we understand the great grace we received in Jesus, it changes the fundamental structure of our hearts—everything is different, including how we understand our money and possessions.
The ultimate goal of Legacy is not a new building; that’s merely a by-product of the true goal: our hearts. A legacy is learning to live and give beyond ourselves. Our hope is that God will use this season to cultivate hearts that love the gospel and desire to establish the work of the kingdom in our city.
Having a financial plan is the best way to exercise biblical stewardship. God wants more than just our 10%, and having a plan for our money helps us view all of our spending—whether it’s a mortgage payment or a vacation—as kingdom spending.
By recording and submitting our commitments, we encourage each other as we watch the effects of the gospel and God’s call to generosity on our brothers and sisters.
In thinking about our families’ financial contribution to the legacy of our congregation, we pay homage to those who gave sacrificially to provide us with the building we call home today.
A legacy travels two ways through time. We look back with gratitude to those who came before us and look forward with hope as we dream of their blessings continuing through us.
For 80 years Green Lake Presbyterian Church has sought to make disciples, beautify the city, and grow the kingdom.
We are rich with stories of God’s faithfulness, provision, and power.
I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever.
Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever.