Life beyond COVID-19!
22 DEC 2020
Allchurches Trust funding has given a church in Scotland a new lease of life, with one grant to transform its building for spiritual growth and another to keep church and community ‘connected’ through COVID-19.
Although 2020 has been testing, Cairnlea Church is gearing up for life beyond lockdown. A major renovation project commenced as soon as full lockdown measures were lifted, with the aim of modernising and opening up the buildings for a wider range of users.
Situated in the heart of Airdrie at Flowerhill, the church and the halls are an important heritage site. With support from a £21,400 grant from Allchurches, the renovation project will make the church more accessible so that the main auditorium space can serve multiple uses throughout the week. The installation of environmentally friendly heating and lighting is an important aspect of the project, and possibilities for catering, better toilets and up-to-date technology will greatly enhance the attractiveness of borrowing or hiring the space.
Before the current Coronavirus restrictions, a wide range of groups - some with a church connection and some not - already kept the halls busy at Cairnlea. With the COVID crisis only underlining how much the community missed gatherings both great and small, Cairnlea looks positively to the future, both to welcoming people back and no doubt welcoming new faces, who will benefit from the facilities.
An additional Hope Beyond grant of £5,000 from Allchurches Trust will keep the community connected in the meantime, allowing the church to continue to reach out to local people online and provide spiritual support. The funding is being used to upgrade the sound and internet at the church to sustain live and virtual services and gatherings as well as online support groups.
“I think the church is always about generating hope”, says the Minister, Peter Donald. “We see the need for young people to be able to meet together, and older people, and many others besides. Cairnlea is going to be able to offer comfortable spaces of varying sizes, and we will do it! We have a long-term commitment to serving the whole community.”
Andrew Bass, Grants Officer at Allchurches Trust, said: “We are delighted to offer our support to these important projects, which will open up this heritage gem to many more local people and place the church firmly at the heart of serving its community, enhancing the practical and spiritual support it is able to offer.”
The first phase of work should be finished in early February 2021, with further phases planned to follow. For more information, see the Cairnlea Parish Church website.