Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Ponte Vedra Beach held a groundbreaking ceremony June 11 to mark the first permanent building in the church’s history.
Located a 276 N. Roscoe Blvd., the congregation has been worshiping in a former stable for many years.
The new sanctuary, designed by Catherine Duncan Architects, will feature a modern interpretation of ‘Cracker’ style architecture acknowledging the region’s past.
Catherine Duncan Architects has won several awards in Jacksonville for historic preservation including the renovation of the former office of Architect Robert Broward into studio spaces. The firm has created a modern interpretation of the Florida ‘Cracker’ style, with breezeways, open porches, a sloping roofline, galvanized steel and local wood including pine and cypress.
“We wanted to respect the local history of the area and ensure the natural beauty of the church property was incorporated into the experience of the congregation,” Duncan said. “To that end, we are using materials and construction methods that are expressed honestly in the design. Glass curtain walls let in light as well as provide a strong connection from the interior sanctuary space to the natural setting of the site.”
Lord of Life is the only Lutheran church in the Ponte Vedra, Ponte Vedra Beach and Palm Valley area and is one of only two Lutheran churches in St. Johns County that are part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, which represents nearly 10,000 congregations in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
The church has an aggressive goal to have the church completed before the end of 2017.
Site work will continue on the property (the infrastructure was put under the land a decade ago); steel will be delivered in July and building will then commence.
Paved parking in front of the church will provide about 25 spots to accommodate the elderly while the remainder of the current parking lot will stay.
“The public is welcome to come to the current sanctuary to see the new building plans, which were approved by the Architectural Review Committee, Palm Valley Overlay District in March,” said interim pastor Kerry Hinkley. “This is a warm, friendly congregation that has prayed for guidance on constructing a new building and hopes to be a relevant, welcoming site that is used by the community, and for those who are looking for a church home.”
The building will be a 75-seat church sanctuary with office and classrooms and a new monument sign. The 3,327 square foot building will have 1,847 square feet for the sanctuary space, 740 square feet for office spaces and an equal amount for two classrooms. Restrooms and a small kitchen will also be included.
The building has large covered front and back porches with breezeways between the sanctuary and the office and classroom wings on the sides for a total of 1,699 square feet of covered outdoor space.
For information and updates on the building progress, go to lordoflifepvb.org.