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Editorial: Make the most of church change

There is a lot of history in the walls at Faith United Methodist Church. The congregations that make up the church date back 160 years in Farmington. Generations of families have worshiped there. The congregation has occupied its current building since 1958.

It’s not surprising, then, that there were objections to a plan that might result in the closing of that building and the creation of a new church in the Farmington area. It’s hard to give up something you’ve known all of your life.

Still, there are times when change is necessary. Membership at the church has been declining for years even as the population in the area has grown. Churches of all denominations have found they have to adapt to draw new families in.

While its exact form is still unclear, this change could be part of that process. It could breathe new life into the congregation, attract fresh perspectives and new families ready to build something exciting.

There is a long process ahead. The congregation has started a conversation with Bishop Bruce Ough about what the next steps might look like, and no changes will come until there is a clearer picture of the expected outcome.

Whatever happens, it will go easier if church members view this as an opportunity rather than an obstacle. Just as congregations merged more than 100 years ago to form what became Faith UMC, this is an opportunity to create something new. The conversation that is to come will, we hope, allow them to create something they can be proud to be part of.

The church is a vital part of the Farmington community. It was recently recognized with a Star of the North award for its work in the community. How much more could the church do with more hands to help?

Nathan Hansen

Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.

(651) 460-6606