July 25, 2012 - Five years ago, Christ the King Church turned a dream into reality with the opening of its 18,427-square-foot multipurpose Family Life Center.
But the Oxford Township church isn't done expanding – not by a long shot.
Currently, the church, located at 1550 W. Drahner Rd., is in the process of adding 2,640 square feet to a facility it calls Burgess Hall.
"That's all for children's ministry," explained Pastor Bob Holt, of Oxford. "We just don't have enough room for the kids. We usually have 250 kids."
With an estimated cost of approximately $200,000, the Burgess expansion was approved by the township planning commission. The church is in the process of having its construction drawings completed and must get building permits from the township.
The church already has enough money for this project sitting in its building fund.
Once this project is done, the church will embark on a fund-raising campaign in the fall to double the size of its foyer area, so as to accommodate smaller events such as weddings and funerals. Approval from the planning commission must still be obtained.
"Right now, the big room that we built, it's just too big for small events," Holt said. "If you try to have a wedding in there with only a couple hundred people, you feel like it's really empty."
The main part of the Family Life Center is a 7,300-square-foot multipurpose room that's currently used for weekly worship services, gymnasium-related activities, concerts, theater productions and banquets.
The foyer, with its fireplace and living room-style seating, offers folks a "very warm and comfortable place" to gather, according to Holt.
Unfortunately, the foyer in its present form is simply too small for some events.
"If we have something for like 200 people, the foyer's not big enough, but the big room's too big," Holt noted.
Holt estimated the foyer addition, which will basically be a "mirror image" of the existing one, will cost approximately $500,000 to build. It will include a coffee bar, he noted.
But before any ground is broken, the church must save up most of the funds. "We have to save 75 percent of that before we can start," Holt said. "That's built into our bylaws."
When the $3.8 million Family Life Center was built in 2007, Christ the King didn't have all the funds at the time, even though the church had been saving for it since 1998.
"I think we borrowed a little less than $700,000," Holt said. That debt was paid off in May of this year thanks to the generosity and devotion of church members.
"I'm very proud of our church because we don't take up an offering (during worship services)," Holt explained. "We have (collection) boxes in the back and people give if they want to. We don't make a big deal of it."
Holt indicated the church has approximately 800 members, "if you count the kids."
"We get 1,000 people attending (worship) from time to time, especially on big holidays like Easter and Christmas," he said.
For more information about Christ the King Church, please visit www.ctkc.org
CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.