|WELS Movie Theaters|
St. Peter Lutheran Church in Freedom has been reaching out lately to young, unchurched Fox Cities residents. But rather than focusing exclusively on expanding its home base, church leaders turned to downtown Appleton to target the crucial audience at a second site.
|The CORE in Appleton, WI|
St. Peter’s, a Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod member, found a permanent spot for its new campus, known as The Core, in a former tavern on West Franklin Street.
The move in 2012 put the church on a growing list of congregations that have converted former businesses into houses of worship.
“Part of it’s a trend in our culture and world today where there are churches who are trying to reach people in a different way that people, who might not be looking for a traditional church, might come to and be more comfortable at. I think part of that drives it,” said the Rev. Tim Glende, lead pastor at St. Peter’s.
|The CORE Worship Service|
Revolution building turning into church
That vacant building at 222 W. Franklin St., at the corner of Superior Street in Appleton, was purchased in a deal that closed Friday.
The new owner is The CORE, a church group that previously held services in the former Big Picture theater and then the OuterEdge Stage in downtown Appleton.
The Core is an outreach ministry of St. Peter Lutheran Church in Freedom.
“We’re not a standalone congregation. We’re a second campus,” said campus pastor Jim Skorzewski, who is known as Pastor Ski. “The Revolution building fell into our lap. It’s been a blessing.”
His congregation tends to be on the young side, mostly under age 35. Worship includes live bands. The Core will continue to hold its Sunday evening worship services at OuterEdge until this building is ready in September.
“We were never looking for a building, but we we’re always looking for a building,” he said. “We didn’t want to be a church that gets a building and then its vision and mission fall to the back burner because everything turns into paying the mortgage. We wanted to put our dollars into flesh and blood, people and relationships.”
Online, real estate listings show the asking price was $850,000. Outagamie County records listed its 2011 fair market value at about $523,000.
“We paid closer to fair market value,” said Jeff Ulman, a member of the church’s executive committee. “George Karl worked with us and helped us out extensively.”
George Karl, head coach of the Denver Nuggets and former coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, owned the building.
The purchase was handled through a church extension fund, said Skorzewski.
“We received a wonderful grant and loan from WELS, the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. Our remodeling was covered by the loan from WELS.”
Church volunteers are already inside working on the renovation. The church draws about 250 people on a typical Sunday.
Revolution was the last nightclub that operated in the Franklin Street building. It was open for about six months, until July 2010. Prior to that, the club had been opened and closed by several operators under the names Tom’s Garage, The Garage and Pulse Nightclub.
...NOW now make room for "The Way Church" in California.
There is a Way. The Way Church. Bringing Life to Rancho San Diego.
September 21, 2014
We had our first service ever this morning! Most of the fifty in attendance were from Shepherd of the Hills Ev. Lutheran Church & School, but we don't mind - we kind of like them:). Thankful for the new faces that joined the familiar ones, and for the word/Word continuing to spread!
Nothing says "church" like the desert back drop on the walls - unless the sermon is on John the Baptist each week... [Their quote from their Facebook Page]
our Mogiv site to set up a one-time or recurring gift to support the ongoing ministry of The Way Lutheran Church. Support of the gospel ministry is truly the gift that keeps on giving!