Church dedicates space for the disabled

Published December 19, 2017

From left are Bob Walton of Maugansville; and Marion Hardin, Renee Mackey, Larry Barron, Marty Talton, Gordon Crabb and Linda Crone, all of Hagerstown. All are members of the accessibility task force who helped design and implement the project

Covenant Presbyterian Church, at 11833 Greenhill Drive in Hagerstown, dedicated a new gathering space on Nov. 19.

The new area was designed for those who live with physical disabilities, either temporary or permanent. GRC Contractors of Zullinger, Pa., built the addition, which includes a restroom for the disabled, enlarged narthex with a small refreshment area and a large classroom, all accessible without stairs.

The dream began in 2011 with a donation by Dominick and Kathleen Perini in memory of Del Summerville. Resource Development conducted an accessibility site survey led by consultant Peggy Martin. That was followed by the church elders’ appointment of an accessibility task force charged with designing and planning the construction of an area for the physically disabled.

David Moats, architect, was chosen to design the space. After interviewing several construction companies, GRC Contractors was hired in the spring of 2017.

Grants were received from the Richard N. Funkhouser Foundation in Smithsburg; the Ministry Group of Baltimore Presbytery; and the Mid-Atlantic Synod of the Presbyterian Church (USA). Individual donations were received in memory of loved ones and from individuals who have a desire to reach out to those with disabilities.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held following the dedication worship service. The Rev. Jackie Taylor, general presbyter, and the Rev. Bill Nickels, associate general presbyter, both of the Presbytery of Baltimore, were on hand to share in the service.

Benjamin Zamostny, band director at Oakdale High School in Ijamsville, Md., played a rendition of “Be Thou My Vision” on a euphonium.

The accessibility task force members were Bob Walton of Maugansville; and Marion Hardin, Linda Crone, Marty Talton, Dr. Renee Mackey, Gordon Crabb and Larry Barron, all from Hagerstown.

“We have dreamed about reaching out to those with physical handicaps in our community for a long time. It is a thrill to see the impossible become possible,” said Renee Mackey, pastor of Covenant. “Thank you to all who made this ministry to the handicapped community a reality. The space is dedicated to the glory of God in honor of all who are disabled.”

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