As you may know, The Well is our expanded expression of a Reading Room and we are currently in the process of reconstructing ours in a way that looks outward and blesses our community.
The Name. As a name, “The Well” has at least two meanings — one is that the well was often a community gathering place in Biblical times. The other is thinking of it as a well of spirituality from which we can draw inspiration, each with his or her own bucket.
The Vision. What is the vision for the uses of The Well? As a trans-denominational space for exploring spiritual ideas, here are some possibilities for its use:
• Shelves of books provided by different faith groups on their spiritual practices (including a shelf of Christian Science books, of course)
• Wednesday’s Prayer and Share meetings can be in the front of the building where passersby can see that there is something going on in our church. (Also easier access for all)
• Small group meetings for both the Brentwood CS Church and Next Generation Fellowship, such as Men’s Group, Spiritual Life Group, etc.
• Meeting place for a book group that might include others who are not part of the Fellowship but are interested in reading books about spiritual ideas
• Lesson study group during daytime hours
• Ecumenical Bible Study
• Evening interfaith talks—about the spiritual practices that bring inspiration to others
• Meeting place for Interfaith Partnership Board and for interfaith dialogue groups
• Small house concerts
• A place to offer 20-somethings a monthly discussion group
• A place for our Fellowship “Bridge” group of 20-somethings to meet on Sunday mornings when they outgrow Starbucks
• Non-profit community access like an AA weekly meeting
This vision was shared with the staff of the St. Louis Interfaith Partnership who were amazed at the idea of a church providing for the interfaith community like this. They wanted to know when it would be ready! (And they will advertise to their 2,000 plus list any interfaith activities that we hold here.)
The Architectural Plans and Process. Over the last seven months we have had final plans for the space drawn up by an architect. A small kitchen with refrigerator and sink is planned in the space that we now walk through to go into the Sunday School. A new double French door will open between the Well and the Sunday School.
We’ve accepted a bid for $42,000 (from Jason Walters at Stylecraft Homes) which does not include furniture, computers, and a screen for the space. Jason’s crew is in the process of getting a work permit from city hall, and this step needs our prayerful support. Once he has the permits and can start the work, it will take only about 4-5 weeks to complete.
As of last Sunday (7/14), we need to raise approximately $19,800 more to finish the build-out and to furnish the space. We have a pledge from one family of $200 a month for six months and two other donations of $7000 and $800. We ask that you give this project of demonstrating our love for our community your earnest prayers and support.
And we’d love to hear your ideas about other ways this space can be used, and your inspiration regarding raising the necessary funds.
Let’s continue to bless our community by turning our own storefront into a vibrant Well, where all are invited to bring their buckets to be filled.