Property rites --3 building projects commemorated
|Evidence is building, literally, about a growing United Methodist witness in the metroplex surrounding the state’s Capitol. This is the first of a two-part series about some of those church construction projects.
—Compiled by Holly McCray
Wickline expands by 22,000 square feet
Wickline UMC, in Midwest City, dedicated a new Family Life Center on April 11. The building totals 22,000 square feet.
Two bagpipers and organist Brian Tidwell led the processional for the Service of Dedication on that Sunday morning.
In attendance were more than 400 members and visitors. Among the dignitaries were Bishop Robert Hayes Jr. and Dan Pulver, OKC-North District superintendent. Mark Burnett is Wickline’s senior pastor, and Cheryl Newton is associate.
That afternoon, a ribbon-cutting ceremony was followed by a community-wide open house, with participation by the Midwest City Chamber of Commerce; Wickline’s pastors, staff, and Legacy Committee; and the architects and construction foreman.
The new center houses Sunday school classrooms, worship and gathering areas for the youth, and staff offices. It contains a stage and an open area to accommodate special services. The church plans to offer an alternative worship service there.
The facility also provides space for athletic events such as basketball and volleyball, which will be open to the community.
Ministry in the Family Life Center has begun, but construction work at Wickline is not complete. Future plans include removal of the old offices and creation of a gathering area for fellowship as people move between the sanctuary and classrooms.
Wickline was launched in 1943. Today membership is more than 2,300 people.
Franklin UMC will open new sanctuary May 16
Franklin United Methodist Church invites people to participate May 16 in the dedication of its new sanctuary. Preacher for the 10:45 a.m. service will be Frankye Johnson, OKC-South District superintendent.
"God is good. All construction has been handled and paid for in-house; the church is debt-free," said Pastor Gerry Rhodes. "The challenge now is to fill the beautiful new sanctuary that God has blessed us with."
The community of Franklin, in Cleveland County, is east of Interstate 35, just beyond city borders for Norman and Moore.
The altar rail from the original church, built in 1907, was installed in the new sanctuary "as a reminder of all of those who came before us. Franklin may have been knocked down a few times, but never out. Its future is brighter than ever," said Rev. Rhodes.
The church was organized in 1890.
Rhodes said a steady increase in attendance and financing reignited a building project in 2009.
A new roof and fresh interior paint were the first accomplishments. Then pews and carpet were purchased. A United Methodist logo was installed on the front of the building. And a new, lighted sign on Franklin Road promotes the church’s presence and events.
Moore-First breaks ground on multipurpose center
At First United Methodist Church in Moore, March 28 was filled with celebrations.
Headliners for the 9 a.m. ground breaking were Bishop Robert Hayes Jr.; Tish Malloy, senior pastor at First Church; and Randy Little, associate. A combined worship service followed.
"We had many blessings to celebrate: the building of a new church and the expansion of an existing church, both dedicated to spreading the Gospel to those living in the Moore/south Oklahoma City area," wrote one of the building campaign managers for First UMC.
The capital campaign, "Building Tomorrow’s Ministries Today," was conducted last fall. Funds raised equaled 140 percent of the church’s annual budget.
The center will include: a gymnasium/multipurpose area, classrooms, one consolidated area for staff offices, and youth space. A commercial kitchen will have the capacity to serve 300-350 people. Renovation plans for the existing building will create an area to house all the Music Programs, including rehearsal space, and a portico. Parking will be expanded, too.
Part 2 of this series will spotlight projects by BridgeView UMC in Norman and Acts 2 UMC in Edmond. Publication date will be May 28.