Dear Friends of Christ Church Greenwich:
2016 has been a momentous year for Christ Church Greenwich. This past spring we were awarded the Greenwich Preservation Trust Leadership Award for historic preservation of our buildings, the end of summer saw the completion of our three years of restoration and transformation, and in the fall the Town of Greenwich Planning and Zoning Commission approved the final site plan for the Neighbor to Neighbor building, among other highlights.
We are deeply grateful to our Capital Projects Committee for all the work they have attended to in the past three years. Our beautiful buildings have been restored, some spaces have been transformed and our new plaza is more accessible, functional and provides a welcoming presence for the entire community.
In 2016 we launched our Long Range Plan, looking towards our future with a foundational understanding that engagement leads to transformation. The plan focuses on growing our membership, increasing our ministries, maintaining and more deeply developing our partnerships and cohesively marketing all that Christ Church Greenwich has to offer. Commissions and Committees have been digesting the plan and begun their work. A survey for young families has been developed and that data is being collected in order to discern how we can best attract, engage and serve our young families. This work will continue in 2017.
We continue to welcome new members of all ages to the parish. Our Christmas Pageant this past December boasted over 70 young participants – a record for our congregation. Our Children’s Ministry and Music programs are flourishing. 2016 saw a total increase in service attendance of 8.9%. Over the past 5 years our average Sunday attendance (ASA) has grown by 11%, placing us in 18% of all Episcopal Churches nationwide, and in 4% of those churches with an ASA over 300.
In 2017 we will turn our focus to youth ministries. We are embarking on an agreement with Ministry Architects to look at our youth program and to make recommendations and provide groundwork to strengthen our initiatives. We are excited to begin this work with the support of the Vestry and our lay leaders.
We would like to thank all of you who care so deeply about Christ Church Greenwich and who devote many hours to so many different commissions, committees, guilds, task forces, and programs. Thanks also to our very talented and dedicated Vestry who provide energy, wisdom and good counsel for the important decisions of our Parish. And most of all, we thank Jim Lemler, who for ten years has truly inspired us with his leadership, vision and deep caring for Christ Church Greenwich.
Audrey Schaus and Randy Schwimmer