For the past 4 months (since May) we have been renting the Community Room on Prince as the primary lease holders and also subletting it to other communities and individuals. Over the last 4 months we have used the space primarily for missional and cultural engagement. We have held 4 1st Friday Art Shows and will hold our 5th this coming Friday. We have held 2 Poetry Nights and 2 Coffeehouse/Open Mic Nights on Music Friday (which is 3rd Fridays in Downtown Lancaster). I am also very excited about our next Music Friday event which is a Benefit Concert to raise awareness and funds to provide a safe house for women getting out of the Human Trafficking industry. (More details about the event can be found here.....
The last art show we had the art of Salina Almanzar, a Lancaster resident and F&M Student and that evening was great. Her artwork was amazing but she shared with others about the art show and we probably had at least 100 people over the course of the night check out her work, engage with her, and talked with us as well. She definitely got what we wanted to do for emerging artists, that being provide the space for artists to display their work and the artist then promotes the show. I am hoping this coming Friday night's show is attended as well as the last one.
It's been great having the space and we have been holding off having our worship gatherings in the space over the last 4 months for a few reasons. One, there was another community that was meeting there on Sunday morning and we wanted to let them us the space. Two we wanted to make sure that we remember the reason behind having this space is primarily for missional engagement and not for ourselves. But now we have decided to begin meeting there for worship. The other community is meeting there on the 1st Sunday in the AM, the 2nd and 4th in the PM, and not at all on the 3rd Sunday. So we can do some missional engagement and service projects on the 1st Sunday of every month, and then hold our regular gatherings on the 2nd-4th Sundays of the month.
In fact we held our 1st Worship Gathering there this past Sunday and had a great turnout with some new faces, some returning College students from Franklin and Marshall (which is only a few blocks away), and some great musical worship and discussion on Jesus moving into the neighborhood and how we can incarnate Jesus into our neighborhoods, work, school, and various networks that we are a part of. I'm really excited about the next few months of Veritas and hopefully what will be a season of growth both in our Gathered times and in our Scattered Times. And I am excited about what God is up to in our community and how we can use the Community Room to bless people, serve people, and missionally engage with the community each month through art, music, and a host of other possibilities.