Ministries set to expand

MCC Ontario, MC Eastern Canada plan new building with other Mennonite partners

November 23, 2011 | God at work in the World | Number 23
By Dave Rogalsky | Eastern Canada Correspondent
Kitchener, Ont.
Mennonite Savings and Credit Union gave Mennonite Central Committee Ontario a half-million dollars towards its new $12 million complex in Kitchener, Ont.

Mennonite Savings and Credit Union recently gave a half-million dollars towards the new $12 million building project of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Ontario at the latter’s Kent Avenue location.

“We are putting our shoulder to the wheel,” said Brent Zorgdrager, the credit union’s chief executive officer, in announcing the gift to the MCC Ontario capital campaign. MCCO plans to build an entirely new, two-storey building totalling 4,738 square metres at its current location. The project is expected to be completed in October 2013, with demolition and groundbreaking beginning in mid-2012. For the first time in nearly 50 years, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Ontario is embarking on a building project in Kitchener.

About 150 interested supporters, congregational representatives, staff and board members crowded into the Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church sanctuary on Oct. 24 to view the second set of plans for a new office building and thrift store. A house adjacent to the current office building has already been purchased and the Waterloo Region District School Board has made it known that the property behind 50 Kent Avenue is available.

The current building is bursting at its seams, with MCC Ontario offices and a material resources warehouse, as well as offices for the Mennonite Foundation of Canada, Mennonite World Conference, a Mennonite Savings and Credit Union branch, and the Mennonite and Brethren Resource Centre taking up the rest of the space.

In addition to these organizations, the new building will house a new and larger thrift store, replacing two current stores in Waterloo and Kitchener, and Mennonite Church Eastern Canada, a part-owner in the new venture.

David Martin, MC Eastern Canada executive minister, explained that the area church’s current building in Kitchener is inadequate, and the cost of upgrading it was in line with that of partnering with MCC Ontario on the new joint structure. Its exact portion of the cost is unclear at this point, as it is too early to know what percentage of the building it would use.

Other Mennonite and Brethren

churches are being invited to join the project since the multi-use nature of the building could make room for emerging congregations to worship there.

While plans are in the early stages, a combined capital drive is expected to begin before the end of the year.

Marg Nally, MCC Ontario chair, prayed for “patience with the process, the details and the dust.”

With files from Dick Benner.

Mennonite Savings and Credit Union gave Mennonite Central Committee Ontario a half-million dollars towards its new $12 million complex in Kitchener, Ont.

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