Dave Everson

Relocation forum

When we moved full-time to Walnut Hill in March 2011, it was with the understanding that it would not be a long-term home. There were some specific things we wanted to accomplish there: rest from our mobile-church routine, stabilize our serving teams, reorganize our leadership structure, pay off our debt and rebuild a solid reserve fund.

By last year, we had accomplished all those goals. And so I began asking the Elders to pray with me about whether it was time to move on. We sensed the timing was right, and so we brought it to the Board. After their own prayer and discussion, they agreed to set up a Relocation Team, to put our building up for sale, and to begin preparations for moving.[1]

Throughout that process, I took for granted that Mosaic members would be pretty united behind the idea of tackling a move. It was something we had said for years we wanted to do. It’s written into our Strategic Plan as a priority.[2] And even though I knew many had come to love “the barn,” including me, there was no sea change in our church’s vision that would indicate we ought to reconsider.

But as we committed ourselves to searching and especially selling, it became clear that we were not as united as I thought. Many people are definitely excited about moving. But others, for a number of reasons, have hesitations. And still others just want it to be over with–one way or the other–so we can move on.

I don’t regret the direction we took this year. But I do wish I hadn’t assumed we were all on the same page. We might have done more asking than telling about the possibility of moving. We might have uncovered people’s ambivalence about moving sooner, and taken steps to include their concerns in the discussion.

We discussed this last weekend at the Teams Workshop and a few days later at the Board meeting. And at 1PM this Sunday, November 2, we’re holding an informal open forum on the move. Betsy and I will share briefly about where things stand with selling and searching. And afterwards, people will be able to share their thoughts on moving–pro and con. Please join us.

[1] It’s important to note that this is a summary of decisions and conversations that happened in stages over several months. I don’t want to give the impression that this happened all at once.
[2] Here’s what the Strategic Plan says about moving:

“Having a stable home base at Walnut Hill has allowed Mosaic to regroup financially and has somewhat reduced the Sunday morning workload. However, our current location does not feel like ‘home’ and there is a strong desire to move into a permanent facility closer to the center of the Rochester region as soon as possible. Many see exciting possibilities for us to further engage the Rochester community once we are in a more accessible setting, where both the building and the surrounding neighborhood are designed for greater interaction with the community. Despite this desire, it is clear that while we are in Pittsford we need to make better use of the building and look for opportunities to serve the immediate community.”

It’s worth noting that, for reasons good and bad, we have not found a consistent way to live up to that last sentence.

Photo Credits
Movers: MTSOfan; CC BY-NC-SA 2.0