Our Sacred Home – An Update from The Junior Warden

For over 125 years, our sacred home at the corner of West Seventh and North Tryon streets has been a place of welcome, solace, and hope for the greater Charlotte community. For me, the beauty of our rich Anglican liturgical tradition is simply the sense of connectivity throughout the generations past – from the early church to the communion of saints and our ancestors – and forward-looking to the many generations to come. It’s the never-ceasing rhythm of gathering as one community to pray, sing, learn, celebrate, mourn, and share in the celebration of the Holy Eucharist that makes a physical-spiritual home of vital importance for us as followers of Jesus Christ.

Throughout 2021, the parish has undertaken several projects from a buildings and grounds perspective. These all center upon Goal 4, Our Home, of our current strategic plan: completing critical building repairs, improving physical accessibility and functionality, and enhancing spaces to reflect our diversity and inclusion values. Parish staff, including our new facilities manager Ernest Jackson, the Buildings and Grounds Committee, and the Vestry have been working diligently to prioritize efforts in a way that allows us to further grow into our vision of being a place of unconditional welcome and a beacon of God’s love in the heart of Charlotte.

Significant repairs are underway to investigate and remediate leaks occurring in the parish house. Automatic door switches are being installed at the entrance of the parish house. Plans for reserved street-level accessible parking on Sunday mornings and informative physical accessibility tours of our parish facilities are being developed. Enhanced lighting is being installed in the crossing and chancel areas of the nave to conclude the build-out of our livestreaming capabilities. Furnishings for our newly expanded parish house lobby have been thoughtfully selected and, upon arrival, will promote a greater sense of community and welcome for all visitors and parish gatherings.

Our historic sacred home offers many incredible elements of God’s love and beauty in a city known for rarely preserving its past history and architecture. However, being stewards of a historic sacred home also lends us unique challenges and opportunities to innovate and advance into the 21 st century.

Like many of you, I have had an overwhelming sense of joy and gratitude in being able to gradually and safely return to St Peter’s for worship and private prayer. As we have for over 125 years, our doors are once again open nearly every day as a sanctuary for the people of Charlotte. Thanks be to God! We are blessed to have such a beautiful sacred home and garden that help provide a rock for us to nurture as a community of courageous followers of Jesus Christ. May we also transcend to go forth beyond our historic red doors, proclaiming the gospel and rejoicing in the power of the Spirit.

Chase Montgomery Branham, Junior Warden