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Since my last report, the Building Committee has finally seen the start of phase 1 construction. This work includes all the renovation work north of the block wall that separates the foyer from the gym vestibule area, up to the north end of the gym, on both the ground floor and level 2. These renovations will see the replacement of the old bathrooms with larger new bathrooms, which will replace both the few stalls that were removed on the west side of the gym as well as the bathrooms off the foyer.

The east side of the gym will see a new nursery area along with amended storage rooms. All the single-pane windows in the rooms surrounding the gym will be replaced with double-pane sealed windows, and the interior walls will be framed up to cover up the block that has been exposed until now. New HVAC systems will be installed, replacing the old boiler system that had not worked properly for quite some time, adding AC and consistent heat to the Sunday school rooms. This work started at the end of February, and we expect to be complete in July.

Tim Ratzlaff of Paragon Homes is our construction manager, and the committee, along with Tim, continue to work towards a phase 2 and 3 permit, the applications of which were applied for late in 2023. A prerequisite of the phase 2 and 3 building permits is approval from the ALC for non-farm use of land in the ALR. To help us navigate the ALC approval process as well as a number of other administrative processes, Vic Martens has joined the Building Committee, and we are all grateful for his expertise and help. A significant part of this ALC approval process is sorting out what additional parking is required, and to figure out the best way to proceed with the requirements provided to us by the City of Abbotsford and the ALC.

Permit applications, ALC approvals, parking by law formulas, traffic studies… if this is making your head hurt and your eyes glaze over, I don’t blame you. This makes my head hurt too. I bet you thought we just had to build stuff. Building stuff is the easy part. Though I find these processes unduly taxing and frustrating, they are not going away and I am grateful for our committee, for Tim and our consultant team that steadfastly work through every issue in order to keep the actual physical work that constitutes the final product moving along.

The Building Committee members are Jake Konrad, Rhonda Janzen, Micheal Penner, Jeff Thiessen, Dylan Murray, Vic Martens, Gerald Heinrichs, Tim Ratzlaff and me. We work together with the Finance Committee, the staff and the elders on a regular basis and have begun implementing a system that streamlines invoicing and accounts payables.

Phase 2 will begin as soon as the ALC and CoA provide us with the required approvals and permits. I am encouraged that after all this time of preparation, we are able to actually do the highly anticipated physical work. I am grateful for the team that has assembled for the project and for the support of all of you, which is essential. Your encouragement and financial support are the driving force, because after all, it is for the church and its ability to carry out our mission of ‘helping people find and follow Jesus’ that we go through all the trouble.

John 16:33 says “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

And the trouble comes. Like God promised Adam when he was ushered out of the garden of Eden, the ground will produce thorns and thistles that we did not plant, and we will only eat our food by the sweat of our brow. Don’t think that only farmers have to deal with thorns and thistles and hard exhausting work. Weeds come into all our lives, and it is by God’s grace that we persevere. It is a gift of God to enjoy the work He has given us to do. May we be found faithful.


For more information about our Extending Our Impact project, you can go HERE