It is encouraging to continue to welcome friends, congregants, and many from Central Alberta to our wonderful facility. As Sunday Sanctuary attendance continues to climb, I think it’s important to note that during the other six days of the week our building has been operating with a very solid utilization rate. Groups (small or mid-size), meetings involving staff, ministry activities, youth activities or guest events that occur from community members renting a space; all of these activities can add up to a busy building. Seen in the graph (right) is a rough outline on how many bookings our facility has handled this fiscal year. 55% of these have occurred in the last four months as we have come out of the pandemic. As a Facility Team, during our Monday team meetings we will sometimes pray for subsets of the bookings who have made the choice to meet at CrossRoads. We ask that Jesus will meet these groups where they are at; that they will flourish in what God has called them to be within these bookings.
Stewardship of facility resources has been so highlighted to me over the last year. It has been a focus since my time on staff began, however, understanding even the smallest fiscal, physical, or environmental improvements can provide clear impacts to our day-to-day worlds. Over the last four years, we have focused on some environmental initiatives to be more aware of our role as a steward of the environmental resources we are placed in care of. Energy use has been a major one. Before society was ground to a halt in March, 2020, we estimated that we had reduced month-to-month energy consumption by about 7.5% from the previous three years data. Then in 2020 & 2021, we were able to continue to press into ways we could conserve energy. The biggest impact was when we were able to continue replacement of 410 light fixtures with new LED fixtures. As we are continuing to welcome people back to the building at very steady rates, we are encouraged to see consumption continuing to be way down. Since March, 2020, we have yet to see even a single monthly consumption total climb above our previous three year average. A rough, yet real estimate is that we are currently saving approximately 165,000 KWh per year over previous years’ practices. This, coupled with some waste-diversion techniques and enhanced water tracking to ensure we don’t overuse, has generated some promising and fruitful outcomes. I am grateful for the intentional time and attention being spent on stewarding of God’s creation.
December, 2021, brought an unexpected happening. A sprinkler pipe burst above the single washroom in the front staff area. For anyone who has experienced the helpless feeling of free flowing water into a space it definitely is not supposed to go, you know how my morning that day went. Thankfully the incident occurred mid-morning on a weekday which allowed for a quick response. Our Facility Team was able to hustle and isolate the sprinkler line and shut the water off. A healthy contingent of staff was able to pitch in with squeegees, wet vacs and brooms to help contain the water from reaching further than it did. The County Fire Department was dispatched due to the alarms and sensors going off, and even though they were given the all-clear, they caringly stuck around and helped support the cleanup. It is humbling to work shoulder-to-shoulder with first responders and get a glimpse into the chaos and unknown they enter into every day. We are so grateful for you. As a group, we were able to contain the water until a remediation contractor was able to get to the site and manage the drying and assessment portion of the “flood”. As this happened only a week or so before Christmas, restoration efforts spilled into the New Year. Cleaning, carpets, cove base, drywall, paint, and a bit of millwork, followed by more cleaning, were some of the tasks needed to allow us to have a refreshed space to operate. Front reception and office staff were displaced for weeks in some cases. We are grateful that we came out relatively unscathed through it all.
As many experienced, 2021-22 brought a continued yo-yo effect on so many aspects in our lives. However, it is so comforting to know that we serve the Ultimate Constant. The same yesterday, today, and tomorrow!