|This path seems fairly straight-forward|
St. Louis, MO., Botanical Gardens
What to do? How to lead? Where, if anywhere, was God going with all this?
I prayed. I journaled. I talked in depth with my spiritual director. I still do these things!
If construction of light rail on Fern Avenue (the street that provided access to the church building) would mean the demise of the congregation, as many members believed it would, then the church should leave the building, right? We should sell it before Fern Avenue was torn up and the property devalued, right? But how could we do that if we weren’t sure light rail would really happen? Was the church going to die in this location, regardless? What should we do? What would Jesus Christ want us to do?
I remember praying in the sanctuary and hearing in my heart quite clearly: “Go to St. Thomas More first.” I immediately set this aside because I did not know if it came from God, or from me, or from someone or something else. It was something I would discuss with my spiritual director.
What came to me after prayer and thought were two potential options if Aldersgate sold the property. One: merge with a large, healthy church in Chapel Hill, using the proceeds from the sale to bless that church’s ministries; or two: use the proceeds to buy a house in the Chapel Hill area and become a “house-church.”
I knew next to nothing about either option. My work was cut out for me – explore the options and then go to church leaders and ask them which choice, if any, appealed to them. I began to research the options via the Internet, and this would lead me to greater exploration through conversations with local “experts,” including the district superintendent. The results were surprising.