Chairman’s Corner August 2019

Just like the loggerhead sea turtle hatchlings have no idea what the future holds for them as they march across the sand to the sea, often we, too, have no idea what the future holds for us. Sometimes, it’s an opportunity. Sometimes, a challenge. This year, the Chapel and its affiliates have been very busy responding to both.

Hurricane Florence’s negative impact on us last September was certainly a shocking and unwelcome surprise but so many positive things have happened as a result of it. Affiliate volunteers jumped in and renovated Brenda Garrison’s home after it was ravaged by the storm. Shortly thereafter, the same volunteers along with the help of other affiliates totally renovated the ground floor of the youth cottage because of water damage from Florence.

At the same time, our contractor and affiliate volunteers were renovating and restoring the Respite Apartment for missionaries in the Fellowship House that also sustained much water damage. Brenda and her family are tickled with their “new” home, the youth are thrilled with their new “hang-out” space and are spending more time there, and recent guest missionaries just can’t believe the accommodations the Chapel provides for their families to enjoy. Again, thanks to each one of you who had any part in these projects.

The Chapel’s insurance committee has also been busy updating our insurance coverage. Members have inventoried and valued every item of personal property in all four facilities owned by the Chapel, re-evaluated building costs, and made significant adjustments to our building values. The committee has spent a great deal of time and effort over the past couple of months ensuring that our insurance coverage is up-to-date. I’m grateful for their willingness to undertake this initiative to keep us on solid footing with respect to our risk exposure.

And while all this has been going on, affiliates were working behind the scenes to evaluate and facilitate the opportunity to purchase an additional property adjacent to our current holdings. Recently, the Board of Governors authorized the Trustees to acquire the tract of land that runs between South Anderson Blvd. and Carolina Blvd., immediately to the north of the youth cottage. The acquisition was finalized in late June.

A small, deteriorated house sits on the newly acquired property, and the Board has authorized its removal. The Board doesn’t have any plans for the property at this time, only to hold onto it for future expansion of Chapel missions and facilities. The last property acquisition by the Chapel occurred in 2007 with the purchase of the Fellowship House, and just look at what it has become. Certainly, down the road we’ll look back and think what a great idea it was also to acquire this property for future use in our mission to glorify God.

Yes, this has been a busy time in the life of the Chapel and its affiliates. And we have to continue to look forward, and to pray for future avenues for Chapel growth in missions and other opportunities to spread the Gospel. Some say “if you ain’t moving forward you’re moving backward”. Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Many other verses in the Bible speak to moving forward and not looking back. Our Chapel is fortunate to have affiliates with the foresight to look years down the road and be ready to seize opportunities to be in God’s service. That’s having a VISION. Let’s keep praying for discernment of God’s future plans for our Chapel.

And also, let’s continue to pray diligently for those with health and other concerns among our Chapel affiliates, our friends and family. We all know there are many that need our prayers. Prayer is powerful and it works, we know that because we’ve all experienced it, and the Word plainly tells us it works.

As always, please continue to reach out to me with your thoughts and ideas about our Chapel going forward. I can be reached at 910-604-3835 or via email. Thank you.