Friday, May 15, 2020

Beloved Members of Trinity,

Trinity’s gorgeous Gothic building gives us many reasons to be grateful, including space to offer to the wider community. Of course, the building also requires much of us- in terms of time, talent and treasure. Even aside from our extraordinary issues (who in this parish can say “plaza” without flinching?), we recognize our beloved, historic building deserves consistent maintenance and care. 

Mindful of the need to balance our joy in sharing our building along with our responsibility as stewards to the building’s ongoing requirements, your vestry last year agreed to explore sharing some costs with both Leadership Toledo and Food For Thought. (AA has a long history of contributing to Trinity’s maintenance.) 

LT and FFT offices are housed here. Both also use other areas of the building for larger meetings and, in the case of FFT, kitchen space for food storage, as well as My Brother’s Place for weekly gatherings of their enviable number of dedicated volunteers for meal preparation. 

All of us at Trinity admire and whole-heartedly support our building partners’ missions. After deeper study, it became clear, that in order to continue having building partners using considerable amounts of our space it was prudent and right to implement a shared building cost fee to help offset our expenses. Rather than instituting a rental fee, the vestry agreed upon an amount that would reflect a small percentage cost of the building maintenance expenditures. Trinity determined the “Shared Cost” amount would be a $1,000 per month.

Letters were delivered to both organizations in December 2019 with a request that we be notified of their decision by April 1 and that the fee schedule would begin July 1. We gave LT and FFT six months to make their decision, aiming to ensure ample time for internal discussion. 

We’re delighted that Leadership Toledo chose to maintain its Trinity headquarters. 

Food For Thought has informed us they will relocate in June. While we will be very sad to lose our ongoing daily connection with FFT, rest assured we continue to seek demonstrable ways to support the organization’s much-needed community services. Most recently, we offered to explore how Trinity might become a mobile food pantry site; we’ll report back to the congregation should this develop. For now, please join us not only in wishing FFT well, but also in continuing to support its mission to combat community hunger – more critical now than ever. 

Change of any sort often comes with challenges and this is certainly the case for your Trinity leadership team as we seek to balance our responsibilities to the ministry (including our physical assets) while also supporting the work in our community to help the least of these. 

Please feel free to contact your wardens with questions. 

Donna Steppe, Senior Warden
Roberta Durham, Junior Warden

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