Former Drayton Church to be New Home for New City Congregation
(Crystal A. Proxmire, Nov. 21, 2019)
Ferndale, MI – The congregation of New City Church, currently meeting in a school building in Royal Oak, is hoping to celebrate Easter Sunday 2020 in a building all their own.
Pastor Ryan McVicar and his flock of about 250 have big dreams for their new home at 2441 Pinecrest in Ferndale, the site of the former Drayton Avenue Presbyterian Church. They are currently raising the $1.2 million needed to purchase the building and make necessary renovations.
“In order to be ready to open the doors, there are many important projects that we will focus on throughout various phases,” Pastor McVicar said. “Our first phase to get us to the point of worshiping in the building on Sundays include landscaping, deep cleaning, asbestos removal, improving and updating the mechanical and electrical components, updating and beautifying various rooms, bathrooms and space for our nursery, children’s and youth ministries, investing in sound and lighting for the sanctuary, new doors, hardware and windows, signage, resurfacing the parking lot… and much more!”
“Since this is our first permanent building, we are enjoying the opportunity to gather for ‘work days’ at the building to beautify our property on the outside and inside. It has been so encouraging to see the many talents and gifts of our members come to life as we prepare this new home for New City,” he said.
Also in New City will be a ministry called “Creative Collective,” which is a group of artists who “want to invite and engage other artists from the community to join in various projects and discussions about the arts,” McVicar said. “Our Creative Collective ministry would like to transform some of the space in our new building into an art studio and gallery where various art will be displayed. Our hope would be to have evening community events to enjoy the art and to spend time with one another.”
The hope is that neighbors will welcome them and take part in events. “We will be sad and disappointed if many from the community are not part of our Sunday worship, mission and service events, small groups, youth events, men’s and women’s events, social events on the front lawn, Bible studies, banquets, breakfast gatherings and more. I think joining together for some or all of the above, over time, will be the best way for us to develop deep and lasting friendships with each other,” Pastor McVicar said. “Although New City is connected nationally with the Presbyterian Church, most of our members do not have a Presbyterian background. From the beginning, New City has intentionally gone out of our way to be a place where people can find community whether they are churched, un-churched or de-churched; whether they are a committed Christian or skeptical, confused or curious about Christianity. No matter what your spiritual story is, New City is a community where serious and genuine conversations take place about the joys and pains of life, the claims of Jesus Christ found in the scriptures and about the brokenness and beauty of his church. New City is most definitely a broken and imperfect church, but we are honest about it and invite others to join in this honest conversation that ultimately leads us to live our lives utterly dependent upon Jesus Christ and to give our lives in service to others.”
New City started in 2012 with a handful of people meeting in a living room on Sundays and in various public spaces throughout the week to discuss life, God, spirituality, Christianity and the Bible. Most of the members are from the Royal Oak and Ferndale area, but some there are members from Detroit, Rochester Hills, Warren, Novi and many places in between.
“Ferndale is a centralized location for us,” McVicar said. “As a highly relational church, we love that our new building is situated right in the middle of a vibrant community minded neighborhood. We have many young families at New City so it has been wonderful to see so many families and children out and about in the neighborhood around the church. Being in close proximity to Detroit has also been important to us from the beginning since our heart and vision is to be a church who cares for the city of Detroit, always responsive to meaningful ways we can serve.”
Neighbors and others who want to learn more can visit their website www.newcitypc.org. There is even a page where people can donate towards the relocation efforts.
“We would consider it to be such a privilege and gift if members of the community contribute to our fundraising efforts. We truly want the building to be a blessing to the neighborhood. When people walk, bike or drive by our building, we want them to be struck by the beauty of the building and feel a sense of thankfulness for the ways New City is serving the community. We would love for people in the community to help us in our goal to restore the former glory to all parts of the beautiful building nestled on the corner of Pinecrest and Drayton,” Pastor McVicar said.
For an inside look at the church when it went up for sale in 2018, including lots of pictures, visit our previous article.