The last service at St. John’s Lutheran Church toook place Sunday as the facility is being decommissioned due to deterioration. Services will continue at the neighbouring Comunity Baptist Church, beginning this Sunday at 4 p.m. (Jennifer Smith/Morning Star) The last service at St. John’s Lutheran Church took place Sunday as the facility is being decommissioned due to deterioration. Services will continue at the neighbouring Comunity Baptist Church, beginning this Sunday at 4 p.m. (Jennifer Smith/Morning Star)

St. John’s Lutheran Church relocating services

Services will be held at Community Baptist Church at 4 p.m. Sundays starting April 15

It was a tough decision to close the doors of St. John’s Lutheran Church after more than 30 years in operation, but chairman Barry Schick said it all came down to a problem with the clay.

“The clay under than building has been causing us problems since the beginning — when we first built the church 35 years ago,” Schick said.

“There’s just been a lot of shifting and a lot of movement so we’ve been working on repairs and things over the years but it’s just got to be too much. It was time to make some hard choices.”

The church held its final worship service in the Alain Road building on Sunday, April 8 and began decommissioning its present facility. Perimeter fencing has been put up around the Sanctuary, and the entry by Alain Road is being closed.

In the meantime, Schick and the congregation are faced with the “hard work” of figuring out what comes next. He said at the moment, no one is sure what that looks like.

“It’s hard to say,” he added. “It depends on what we decide to do. We have a few options to look at.”

Among those to be considered are rebuilding from the ground up, renovating or rebuilding part of the building or selling the land and moving entirely.

Though the building itself is fairly young, Schick said St. John’s congregation has been active in the area for more than a century, and despite the setback of not having a home of its own, the situation is only temporary. He anticipates it could be as long as two years, or as short as a matter of months — the length of time the congregation will be displaced, he reiterated, hangs on what they decide to do with their building.

While he and the other members consider the possibilities, the Community Baptist Church (4911 Silver Star Rd.), which is next door to the St. John’s church, has “graciously” offered the congregation the opportunity to share their facilities for services and activities. St. John’s will hold their services at 4 p.m. starting Sunday, April 15, while the Baptist congregation will continue to hold their service in the morning.

Schick said he’s grateful for the Baptist Church’s offer to share their building, and feels confident the two busy congregations will work well together as housemates.

St. John’s Lutheran Church was founded in 1902, with the first chapel built in Vernon in 1910. A church was built on 27th Street in 1913 for the congregation of 164. A larger church was needed by 1952 and was in use until the present building on Alain Road was built in 1985.

Erin Christie

Morning Star Staff


Just Posted

Okanagan travel survey deadline approaches

Participants have until Dec. 18

UPDATED: Absolute discharge for mischief charge against Sagmoen

Trial starts at 9:30 a.m. in Vernon Law Courts

Customer appreciation day supports CMHA Vernon

Families Helping Families raised $1,000

Judge rules controversial Lake Country inn will not get business licence

A Court of Appeal judge sided with the district Tuesday

Lake Country residents give letters of support for cannabis store

Council will decide on whether to approve a variance and licence for Compass Cannabis

Omar Khadr wants changes to bail conditions

‘My life is held in suspension’, says the former Guantanamo Bay detainee

Sissons scores OT winner as Predators beat Canucks 4-3

VIDEO: Vancouver battles back to earn single point in Nashville

Lions announce seven members of coaching staff not coming back for 2019

The operational moves come two days after the Lions announced DeVone Claybrooks as the team’s new head coach

Okanagan lawyer honoured by appointment to Queen’s Counsel

Only seven per cent of practising B.C. lawyers are appointed

Letter: Hopping for happiness

Last week, my two kids (10 and 6) set up a hopscotch on the main street.

Missing man last seen in Shuswap

Red Deer RCMP would like public’s help locating elderly man with dementia last observed in Sicamous

Scholarship smooths road ahead for Okanagan College transfer student

27 students from Okanagan College received awards from the Irving K. Barber Society

$12K awarded to atheist family who oppose Christmas, Hanukkah in B.C. classroom

Gary Mangel,May Yasue said holidays, Remembrance Day and Valentine’s Day not appropriate in preschool

Aboriginal poet faces backlash for calling out NHL-themed totem poles

Rebecca Thomas says she received backlash for asking a drugstore chain to remove NHL merchandise

Most Read