The Grand Junction Church held their final service in their old sanctuary on Sabbath, Dec. 30, 2017. Having received a Certificate of Occupancy from the City of Grand Junction, the congregation is now officially permitted to begin use of their new building for worship and Christian education. The structure can now be used as a public building within the City of Grand Junction.

This development was especially good news for the weary members of the Building and Finance Committees. This process has been long and sometimes traumatic.

They have had to overcome a series of challenges to arrive at this exciting development. Such issues as asbestos remediation; expanding building plans and project costs; church school, principal, teacher and pastoral transitions; sacrificial giving in the short term and substantial commitment for the long term with a looming financial shortfall; and extended vacate deadlines with Colorado Mesa University have all complicated the process.

The Grand Junction Church persisted, though, because without the Certificate of Occupancy, the building would be unusable for public worship, gatherings or operations. Because Grand Junction Church is a church and a school united in one building, they have had to pass the highest standards for fire and building safety codes within the City of Grand Junction.

Once the Certificate of Occupancy was received, Sabbath school teachers and children’s division leaders were able to finish moving into their rooms and customizing their learning environment. A daily program in the new school building of the Intermountain Adventist Academy began Jan. 16, 2018.

To close out the final worship service in the old sanctuary, the congregation held hands, surrounded the perimeter of their church and sang “Side by side we stand,” thanking the Lord for decades of worship at the 730 Mesa Avenue church and school. Pastor James Fox, interim pastor, looked into the future ahead of the congregation and preached about new beginnings.

The congregation beamed with excitement as they looked toward their first church service in the new location at 550 25½ Road on Sabbath, Jan. 6. On that day, Pastor Fox led a dedication of the new building to the Lord and a special service of thanksgiving and prayer.

“Psalm 121 states it clearly, ‘Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who  build it,’” he said. “We want to invite the Lord to fill this new house with His presence to bless and dwell with His people. This Sabbath will be a time to reflect and remember how God has blessed us on Mesa Avenue through the decades. As we remember His blessings in the past, we can look forward with confidence to His presence and guidance in the days to come.”

The Grand Junction Church is out with the old and in with the new. The church members are replacing the chaos and challenges of preparing for the transition with order. “Order out of chaos is in our future,” exclaimed Pastor Fox.

RMCNews with James Fox.