November 4, 2013
CHRIST CHURCH DEER PARK
Opening up our Sacred Space and Grounds
The Sacred Space and Grounds Committee of CCDP formed in connection with the ReImagining Church initiative consists of:Fraser Baillie, Joyce Hamilton, Bob Hutchison, Kathy
Lindsey and Henry Zaluski.
The objectives of the Committee are to review and make recommendations to ensure:
1. exterior and interior attractiveness
2. a welcoming facility to serve our mission
The foregoing objectives were adopted in the context of the relevant signposts of vitality in the
works of Diana Butler Bass which were the subject of review by the CCDP Management
Committee and the Parish forums that have been held being: Hospitality, Diversity, Worship and
The Committee undertook a review of the premises and grounds and drew on the experience and
familiarity of the Committee members with our premises and grounds as well as informal input
and comments received from other parishioners. In addition, the Committee conducted some
research with respect to the experiences of other congregations in Canada in respect of their
premises and grounds. Two broad conclusions were drawn from our review. First, it is apparent
to us that while our premises, grounds and overall location are important assets to CCDP, we are
not maximizing their value. Second, a review of the work and developments of other
comparable parishes indicates that necessary new views and concepts for sacred space and
grounds are evolving. As examples of the basis on which these conclusions were reached, there
is a consensus that our external visibility from the point of view of the community is "messy"
and uninviting. The nave is badly lit and somewhat forbidding and is not easily adaptable for
multi-use purposes. Through the experiences of other parishes, there are a number of examples
in Toronto and elsewhere demonstrating inviting and imaginative architecture that is not only
attractive to the community but increases the use and value of the assets.
A specific list of subjects identified (roughly prioritized in terms of scale and importance) is:
landscape/gardening upgrades such as flowers and clean-up
lighting of the stained glass windows
open, adaptable space
On invitation from the Management Committee, the Committee prepared an application for
funding from the Re-Imagining Church initiative which was submitted and accepted by the
Allocation Committee and the Management Committee. Apart from proceeding with easily
achievable objectives such as garden improvements (conducted in the spring of 2013) and
exterior banners, the main initiative approved was the commissioning of a professional,high level
study to assess the ideas identified by the Committee in its work and suggest other solutions.
Accordingly, a request for proposal to be issued to selected architects or consultants has been
prepared and is intended to be issued in November. The selection of the consultant will be made
in December and completion of the work which will include a final feasibility/conceptual design
report inApril 2014.
The Committee is eager to discuss any aspects of our Sacred Space and Grounds review with
interested persons and to receive ideas as to physical assets of CCDP in the future.
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