Little Church Needs a Big Miracle
First Presbyterian Church of Washingtonville is praying for a miracle this holiday season. The church, located in Washingtonville, has fallen on some hard times. Like many churches, enrollment has gone down dramatically. Unlike many churches, however, First Presbyterian has continued to maintain its outreach to the community.
First Presbyterian Church is home to many organizations during the week such as AA, NA, Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts. It also hosts free community dinners once a month. Despite a lot of traffic in the building, the number of members has steadily decreased and, along with it, the monetary contributions needed to maintain the building, which has fallen into disrepair.
First Presbyterian Church was founded in 1841, and the church building was built in 1847. In 1900 a chapel was added behind the pulpit.In the 1950s an additional building was constructed including the Parish Hall and a new kitchen. Since 1990, there have not been any other major structural improvements; and herein lies the problem. The roof leaks and is in need of replacement, and so do the front steps and sidewalks, the outside kitchen steps, the handicap ramp and the repaving of the parking lot. The ever-increasing cost of owning and operating the Washingtonville Cemetery is an additional stress upon this small church. The estimate of repairs is $175,000.
The church has created and supported many community projects, including the Country Kids Food Pantry and the Food for Kids program for those children in need in Washingtonville elementary and middle schools.
For a church that has given so much to its community, it is time for the church to ask the community for help. A Give Now button was added to the First Presbyterian Church website; but with few people visiting the site, contributions did not come in. We are asking our communityto please contribute to this worthy cause. The funds collected will be used for the needed repairsto keep this church going.
If there is ever a time of the year for a miracle to happen, it is now. Saving the First Presbyterian Church building is not just helping the parishioners but also the community it serves. A GoFundMe page is being set up, and until then, contributions can be made through the FPC website at www.fpcw.makeswebsites.com. The Give Now button is found at the bottom of the home page. Thank you for anything you can do to help.
(Photo by Derek Robertson)