Despite being small in numbers, God is working in big ways at Cornerstone Church in Lansing, Illinois. Over the years, Cornerstone has grown to become a multi-ethnic church. This means that in ethnicity breakdown, the second-largest ethnic group makes up more than 20% of the congregation. They saw God transforming their church as it became multi-ethnic not just in attendance numbers, but also in ministry and leadership.
After reaching this milestone, the Cornerstone leadership began to question what was next. How was God continuing to work in their church? As Cornerstone was approaching their 75th anniversary, they realized that the building had never undergone renovation. They were working towards a further outreach to the community, but they didn’t have the facilities to match. So they prayerfully decided that their next step was to improve the church facilities. But with a congregation of 125, how would they raise enough money to complete the necessary renovations? A capital campaign would require a huge step of faith.
Cornerstone then partnered with Converge MidAmerica to guide them through their capital campaign process. Gary Rohrmayer and Bryan Moak advised the Cornerstone campaign team as they worked together to decide the best steps forward. Together, they came up with a goal of $300,000.
As soon as Cornerstone announced the campaign to the congregation, everyone was excited to get involved. People sensed the momentum of reaching the community with the gospel of Christ and they wanted the opportunity to invest in the church. The church leaders were bold with what the campaign was about, and this openness fostered a sense of dedication in the congregation. The capital campaign brought people together. They believed in the unity of the church and were excited to see it progress.
On the Sunday that Cornerstone was announcing the commitments, after two months of donations, they were just under their target goal. Just as the campaign chair, Saad Abbasy, was going up to announce the final numbers, he looked down to see a notification on his phone saying that they had just reached their $300,000 goal. It was miraculous timing.
Cornerstone has leveraged the unity and the agreement of vision towards this goal, and people at the church have responded well. They are taking things one step at a time, and as their current renovations finish up, they are looking towards the next steps where God is leading them. According to Rev. Michael Eberly, the senior pastor at Cornerstone, because they were aware of how God was working before the capital campaign started, they were able to put that money towards the areas where they had already seen growth. They did not take a step forward that was not in line with what God was already doing in their church. And as they continue to see how God moves, they will take steps in the same direction as Him.
Eberly also credits his strong and dedicated team to the success of the capital campaign. While he assisted in a supporting role of the campaign, Saad Abbasy and Kandi Elliott were the ones who took charge of the process. He’s thankful for them and their commitment to follow through. He’s also thankful for Gary and Bryan’s leadership through it all in giving him the confidence to press ahead and give confidence to their team.
Laura Anderson, Director of Marketing
Laura Anderson is the Director of Marketing for Converge MidAmerica.