The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, January 31, 2003


A new sanctuary at last for the Congregational Church

The Carlisle Congregational Church joyfully celebrated the opening of their new sanctuary during the weekend of January 25 and 26. There was an open house for the entire community on Saturday, and a dedication service on Sunday. Both were well attended and members of the congregation welcomed new visitors and old friends. A brief service was held on Saturday, and a full dedication service on Sunday. Tours of the building were given by the building committee and other members of the church, and a brief ceremony was held to thank all those whose "fingerprints" were on the project. Refreshments were delicious as well as abundant and a good time was had by all.

The new faci lity is beautiful beyond the hopes of those involved, as well as those visiting. The new sanctuary has seating for three hundred, new comfortable pews, beautiful chandeliers, the carpeting and pews are color-coordinated in shades of crimson, and the
The church's new entryway is located just off School Street, across from the parking area. (Photo by Midge Eliassen)
woodwork is a light oak. There is more and better parking, more bathrooms and of course the entire building is handicapped-ac cessible with ramps and elevator. All in all, in addition to being beautiful, there is a most peaceful atmosphere inside for those in attendance.

Members of the church have waited a long time for these renovations. They originally moved from the "old church" at 50 School Street in 1970, when they just outgrew the space there. At that time, the new building housed only Sunday School rooms and the Paul F. Swanson Fellowship Hall, plus a few offices. The Swanson Fellowship Hall was an all-purpose room, serving as a temporary sanctuary and a recreation hall for eating and entertainment. This required the setting up and tearing down of tables and chairs for many social functions, and resetting as an auditorium. Many of you will remember the Pancake Breakfasts on Old Home Day, the "Kids Night Out and Sleepovers," and the Janet Gates Peckham Concerts, among other things. All of these required a fast turn-around for Sunday services the next day.

Now at last, after 33 years, a new separate sanctuary, narthex, and library have been built. This also involved the tearing down and rebuilding of the kitchen, relocating the offices, and a whole new heating and septic system. The church feels that it can now do the same things as before, but can do them much better and more efficiently. In simpler words, a new facility with easier function, while offering the same message. Check it out.

Reverend Keith Greer (left) is about to recognize the church building committee (from left to right) Gary Hobday, Kirk Ware, Love Seawright, Lyn Xavier, Jon Belanger and Don McGillivray. (Photo by Ellen Huber) The narthex skylight provides a great view of the steeple. (Photo by Ellen Huber)

Beverly Porter, Cynthia MacLeod and Barbara Maxwell work out of an expanded and more modern kitchen. They have assured us that they will be back in business with the pancake breakfast on Old Home Day. (Photo by Ellen Huber)
  The narthex skylight provides a great view of the steeple. (Photo by Ellen Huber)
Father Donahoe's tour of the Congregational Church ends with refreshments offered by the pastors' wives Bonnie Greer (left) and Deb Weibley. (Photo by Ellen Huber) Anna P. Johnson, a long-time member of the church and Carlisle's oldest citizen, raises her cup in celebration of the opening of the new sanctuary. (Photo by Ellen Huber)

2003 The Carlisle Mosquito