Historic Napa Methodist Church to Reopen Following Earthquake Repairs

October 28, 2015

NAPA, California – Just two days shy of fifteen months of engineering design, reconstruction and retrofitting, Napa Methodist Church will resume all normal program/ministries including weekly worship in its historic 1917 sanctuary on Sunday, November 22, 2015. One Great Morning of Thanksgiving is being planned for 9:30 a.m. that morning followed by a reception at 11:00 a.m. The community is invited to join us in celebrating the return of the interior beauty of the sanctuary and social hall, which matches the exterior walls and windows also brought back to their original beauty. The almost $2.5 million refurbishment of the historic building was funded in large part by the California Nevada Conference Earthquake Self-Insurance Fund ($1,552,500), a generous grant from the Gasser Foundation ($125,000), and an additional $50,000 to guarantee a loan from the Bank of Napa, as well as many financial contributions from across our community and from other parts of the nation. Still remaining is the installation of the thirteen rank organ, whose pipes—while not damaged—were so badly toppled following the quake that they had to be dissembled and stored through the reconstruction phase. The installation is scheduled for early January 2016, and will no doubt culminate in an organ concert to celebrate its reconstruction. The Napa Chamber Music Society will return to its concert home in the newly refurbished sanctuary with its Spring Series beginning in February. Again, in collaboration with the Gasser Foundation, the Chamber Music Society acquired renowned acoustician Larry Kirkegaard of Chicago to consult on returning the original acoustic quality to the room. This involved a highly technical lime wash application to all plaster used in resurfacing the curved walls of the sanctuary. This treatment is solely responsible for “aging” the newly applied plaster to bring out its prior acoustic qualities. Also, thanks to the Chamber Music Society, a newly constructed hard wood platform (chancel) was designed and installed for enhanced use during worship services as well as chamber music concerts. Other enhancements were included in reconstructing the building, including new interior and exterior lighting, skylight windows in the social hall, and a $100,000 fire detection system. Members of the church remain grateful for the generous hospitality extended by the Community Seventh-day Adventist Church in Napa for their gift of the use of their sanctuary and other rooms throughout the fifteen month reconstruction process. Their generosity has resulted in lifetime friendships and what has become an annual collaboration between the two congregations in presenting a Christmas Contata to the community, this year scheduled for Friday evening, December 18 and Saturday morning, December 19 at the Seventh-day Adventist Church and for Sunday morning, December 20 at Napa Methodist Church. About the Napa Methodist Church The Napa Methodist Church is reconciling congregation of the United Methodist Church, affiliated with the Center for Progressive Christianity. The church has a mission and vision to build a loving community inviting people into relationship with Jesus Christ, while serving their neighbors and growing people in God’s grace. Napa Methodist Church currently has a membership of approximately four hundred, houses a weekday nursery school, hosts numerous classes and meetings for community groups as well as church programs, and is a focal point of downtown Napa. # # #