Ocilla UMC Embarks on "Project Facelift"

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Thanks to a low-interest loan from the Georgia United Methodist Foundation, Ocilla UMC in Ocilla, Ga. embarked on “Project Facelift,” a year-long renovation that will bring a host of energy efficient and cosmetic updates to its campus.

As fate would have it, Ocilla UMC pastor, Rev. Jay Roberson, received a newsletter from the Georgia United Methodist Foundation while Trustees Chair, Todd Young, was putting together project costs and financing options. The article identified how the Foundation serves as a lending resource to United Methodist churches wishing to refinance debt or build, expand or renovate their facilities.

Young contacted Kent Canipe, the Foundation’s director of lending services. “I liked the fact that the Methodist Foundation was affiliated with The United Methodist Church. They offered the best rate, understand how our church operates and have been very easy to work with,” he said. “I hope this article helps other churches understand the wonderful work that the Foundation does, as well as the benefits of partnering with this ministry.”

The facelift is designed to make Ocilla UMC more attractive and inviting to longtime members and visitors alike. The improvements address exterior signage, interior and exterior painting and repairs, window replacement, and remodeling of the fellowship hall and kitchen, as well as upgrades to the heating, ventilation, air conditioning and audio/video systems.

This formerly debt-free church intends to pay off its loan as quickly as possible. “We are giving our members the opportunity to make a financial gift to support various aspects of the project, perhaps in honor of or as a memorial to a friend or family member,” Roberson said. “I cannot wait until the day the last nail is driven, the last window is installed, the last carpet is laid, and the last clean-up is concluded, so we might celebrate together what God accomplished among us, as we continue our journey toward a long, bright future.”

This article was originally published in the Summer 2015 edition of Faith & Money, a publication of the Georgia United Methodist Foundation.