Progress on the Church House Roof

My father-in-law, an experienced skipper of many years, is used to complain that owning a boat equals owning a hole in the ocean: You dump money into it, but most of the time you don’t see where it goes.

To some degree, this holds true with the new roof on our Church House as well. There is no scaffolding, there is no dramatic improvement of the overall outside appearance of the building, and even the amount of workers or cars in the driveway is limited. For an estimated cost of $81,000, this is not much to see. Roofing is apparently not a very showy trade.

However, after having made these remarks, there is now some excitement, regardless. As the work proceeded, our architect Margaret Westfield brought to our attention that the little tower above the Church House is in a potentially unstable condition. Pending the advice of the structural engineer, Consistory decided to follow Margaret’s advice and authorized the installation of protective scaffolding. However, after the engineer’s visit, these plans changed for a less expensive variant. Instead of protective scaffolding the affected wall of the tower will be shored up.

If you, dear reader, are of the curious sort, a little climb onto the third floor of the Wolfson Parking Deck across the street may come in handy. This is where I took the accompanying picture. The mighty base of our steeple provides a nice backdrop, doesn’t it? And then you see the chimney of the Church House, already newly rebuilt as part of the current project. In the foreground, you have the tools and materials of Masonry Preservation Group, the company contracted by our architect, Margaret Westfield. We are grateful for their work, and for Margaret’s guidance and encouragement.

About Rev. Dr. Hartmut Kramer-Mills

Hartmut Kramer-Mills, a native of Jena, Germany, began his theological education at Heidelberg University. After the Middle Exam in 1986 he received a scholarship from the World Alliance of Reformed Churches for McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. He graduated from McCormick with a Master of Divinity in 1988. He graduated from Marburg University in Germany with the Ecclesiastical Exam in 1990, and received a Dr. theol. from Greifswald University, Germany, in 1997. From 1990 to 1991 he was vicar at St. Wenzel in Naumburg, Germany. He was ordained minister of word and sacrament in 1993 through the Protestant Church of the Church Province of Saxony. From 1993 to 1998 he served as assistant pastor in Stoessen, Goerschen, and Rathewitz, Germany. At the same time he was lecturer for Church History at Erfurt College in Germany. From 1999 to 2000 he served the Spotswood Reformed Church in New Jersey as interim pastor. Since 2000 he and his wife serve the First Reformed Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey, as co-pastors.
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