In many gatherings, I am asked what is being done to address parking on our campus. The primary concern is on Sunday morning. This is a signi cant issue for many reasons, including accessibility and hospitality. Church park- ing has been discussed from a variety of angles, including both short-term and long-term solutions.

Various options have been discussed, in terms of feasibility, length of time to implementation, and nancial costs. In order to move quickly on this matter, and to be good stewards of the resources you entrust to First United Methodist Church, the most expedient and least costly option that has been identi ed is to adjust the start time of our early worship service and Sunday School 15 minutes to allow for better ow of traf c on our campus.

Starting on December 3rd, the 8:45 service will move to 8:30 and conclude at 9:30. Sunday School will move from 10:00 to 9:45 and will end at 10:30. The 11:00 service time will not change. Long-time members will recall the 8:45 service being held at 8:30 until it was moved to 8:45 in 1995.

A review of our parking on Sunday morning revealed there are as many cars parked on the street during the 11 am worship as we have open parking spots available in our North and South parking. This information points to a potential issue with traf c ow. The congestion occurs when persons leaving after Sunday School have yet to do so before persons arriving for worship at 11 am are trying to park.

Additionally, the City of Montgomery has given us permission to park once again on both sides of West Cloverdale Park from the entrance to South Parking to Cloverdale Road, providing an additional 15 to 18 spaces on Sunday morning.

The trustees continue to explore long-term solutions, including the use of property that the church has acquired over the last several years. Proposals recommended by the trustees will still take time to come to fruition.

Our desire is for you to have the best experience possible when you come to First United Methodist Church of Montgomery for worship and Sunday School. These changes will create a slight adjustment to our Sunday morning routine, but improvements to the traf c ow and parking will ensure all per- sons are able to attend worship and Sunday School each week.

These changes are an attempt to immediately address an on-going issue for our congregation, doing so in the least costly way possible. The Church Staff and Board of Trustees will monitor and review data on parking and the impact
of these changes in May of 2018 to determine whether to continue with this new schedule. Conversations will continue as we look to identify additional short- term and long-term solutions to our parking needs. If you have any sugges- tions for consideration by the trustees, please submit them to Drew Norman, our Facilities Manager, at dnorman@fumcmontgomery.org.

Thank you for your faithful support of First United Methodist Church of Montgomery!

Blessings and peace,

      Dr. Jeremy K. Pridgeon