Dear Central Family:

I spoke with Jim Hitson yesterday evening, and he reported to me that the counting committee had tallied the votes from the church conference yesterday, and the results were that 91 were in favor of the recommendation to sell the camp, and 24 were against. That is about 80% in favor, and 20 against. Some thoughts that I have:

1. I want to personally thank the people who served on the Special Committee for their time. Much time was spent trying to work through and weigh the options related to the church finances, and many served with a heavy heart, because the decision we arrived at was where no one really wanted to go. So I offer my gratitude to Jim Scott, Richard Dycus, Jennifer Goodwin, Mike Sapp, Karen LaMott, Marty Petty, Tom Pokorny and Jerry Penny, who worked from the beginning. And I want to thank Diana Allen, Patty Rippey, Ellen Clontz and Michelle Carlson who came on during the summer to help us work through the process again. Some who served were not in favor of the conclusion that was reached, but they remained in the process, and were willing to speak up when they disagreed, and every church needs people who are willing to do that.

2. To that end, while this is a vote that is decisive enough for us to move forward, there are more than 24 people who are hurting right now, and as Christian brothers and sisters, we must be compassionate and kind, and understand that this is difficult for people in the church. There is no one that is rejoicing today.

3. As I have said all along, this decision was not the only decision that we will have to make. This does not solve, but significantly addresses the financial piece of the puzzle to revitalize and rejuvenate our church. The other pieces of the puzzle still require our courageous action, and we will begin to be put them in place next week as we hear reports from the Dawnings team. We have much work to do, and it is time for us to get to work.

4. The vote yesterday does not mean that we have sold the camp. It means that we have decided to place it on the market for sale. There is still a process that must be worked through, and there are still decisions to be made about how we manage the camp from this place forward. We must be good stewards of both our finances, and of the gift that the camp has been to our congregation. As those decisions are made, we will keep you informed.

5. While this will be said again, there are many memories out at camp, some tangible, and others in our minds. To the extent that we are able, when a sale is pending we will make sure to bring the tangible memories back to Central. The history of what Camp has meant to our congregation over the years will not be forgotten.

There will be many more things said over time as we walk through this process, but please commit our church to your prayers this week, that we will move in positive directions as a congregation, and that what comes out of this will be positive action toward building the Kingdom.