MONROEVILLE - Trinity Lutheran Church is putting dreams into action.
On Sunday, the church broke ground for its new Sunday school addition and also officially unveiled the massive woodcarving of Jesus holding a child and lamb, which is located at the parking lot across from the church.
"This has been a longtime dream of the talented and dedicated Sunday school teachers at Trinity," the Rev. Amy Little said. "We have been working within our existing fellowship hall for many, many years using portable dividers, cabinets, chalk boards and anything else we can utilize for our makeshift walls."
Little said the addition was more than necessary.
"With the increase in the number of students on Sunday, as well as our Ecumenical Monroeville Youth Club, we finally got to the point where we said if we are going to continue to grow and serve the community, then we need more space. The young people in this community are so very important that they ought to have nice classrooms in which to learn and experience the love of Christ."
Little said the church has put a lot of thought into its projects.
"The first step on this long journey was to purchase the land across the street for a parking lot," she said. "Now that that projected is completed, we are ready to move on to building the classrooms. The facility will have eight classrooms and a couple of storage closets. It will be built by Janotta & Herner Inc. of Monroeville, who we are very excited to work with. They have been longtime supporters of the Monroeville churches as well as pillars of the community."
Little said the way the project came together was excellent.
"One of the great things about working with Janotta & Herner is that they will allow us to do some of the work ourselves in order to save on the total price. Between our own members volunteering in some areas of the project and the pledges coming from our families, we have 100 percent of the total cost already promised. This is an amazing thing and practically unheard of since the cost of the project is over three times our annual budget."
The Trinity congregation came through.
"The people of Trinity have responded to the present need in faith and have stepped out of their comfort zones so that our mission and ministry can continue," Little said.
And the woodcarving is almost like the icing on the cake.
"Matt Missey created the carving that is now in place in the parking lot across from the church," Little said. "It is about 8- to 9-feet tall and is Jesus holding a child and lamb.
"Jesus said, 'let the children come to me.' This is an important teaching for us at TLC and one that we talk about frequently. Matt was injured while carving this piece of art for the church, but is now doing well and is back to carving. We are proud to have this statue in our parking lot for the community to enjoy and we are proud to call Matt one of our own."