Finding Jesus in unexpected places, stepping into the movement of the Holy Spirit, and walking in faith on uncharted paths all describe the heart and DNA of All Saints’ Episcopal Church (ASEC).
As Good Friday approached, the negotiations with a potential lease holder for the Lockhart Child Development Center came to an abrupt halt, and the leadership of All Saints’ would need to make a decision. As people of Christ, we took up the cross and walked with Jesus. We followed our Lord into Easter Sunday and the resurrection, and we celebrated new life. We are Easter people!
In the first days of Eastertide, All Saints’ leadership made the bold decision to hold the license for the Lockhart Child Development Center and hire a director. God placed Mrs. Waynett Taylor on the path to walk with us and she has accepted the Director position! In partnership with the Cabarrus County government and the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC), All Saints’ will open the Lockhart Child Development Center!
The County has awarded ASEC a one-time grant to cover budgeted startup costs, separate from the All Saints’ general fund. The grant will cover hiring of staff, advertisement, and professional development. In addition, it will fund fencing around the back area to the pavilion and upgrades to the playground. The income will then consist of an on-going commitment by the BOCC to pay half the tuition for up to 40 slots filled by Cabarrus County employees’ children, and additional slots will be filled by others in the community who are desperate for quality childcare.
The same day Mrs. Taylor was hired, Federal approval for creation of a 501c3 was received after a six month wait. This approval establishes a non-profit agency: Lockhart Early Learning Collaborative.The Collaborative will consist of members of the Cabarrus County government, Rowan Cabarrus Community College (RCCC) and All Saints’. At this time a small executive team is in process of creating the purpose, vision, mission, by-laws, board member descriptions, etc. Once up and running, the collaborative will be charged with the governance of the Center.
ASEC is pushed and guided by the Holy Spirit. We walk our Gospel Call in faith and prayer on a winding and uncharted path. Our hopes and prayers are that children will fill the halls of the Lockhart Center by the week after Labor Day.
In the words of a favorite hymn:
Here I am Lord,
Is it I Lord?
I have heard you calling in the night
I will go Lord,
If you lead me
I will hold your people in my heart!
In love and gratitude,
Deacon Jackie Whitfield+