The construction of First Presbyterian Church of Orange County (FPCOC)'s new education building in its Westminster, CA church campus has been completed, and has received support from members of the surrounding community.
To celebrate, the church hosted an opening ceremony on June 4, which included a congratulatory message from Mayor Tri Ta of Westminster, field representatives from other government officials, member testimonies, and a key note speech from Soo Yoo, a member of the ABC School Board.
The idea for the building, called the OC1 Vision Center, first came about in the church's elder session meetings as they discussed how the church could serve the younger generation.
With such a large project there is a lot of money involved, so it was naturally easy to approach points of contention and conflict within the church, explained Pastor James Kwak, the head pastor of the English-speaking congregation at FPCOC.
"Like in any big project, there is difficulty in unifying everyone into one vision," he said. However, through "God's providence, we were able to maintain overall unity and peace of the church and find a construction company who worked with us and went above and beyond for the sake of the building."
"God provided for the building throughout the whole process through different people at different times," said Kwak.
The new building is a total of 14,000 square feet, with 2 floors, a playground, 100 percent LED light system, and energy saving windows. The ground breaking ceremony for the beginning of construction for the building was almost a year ago on June 28, 2015.
During the ceremony, a member of the elder board, Dr. Robert Ha (MD), introduced and explained the vision statement for the new OC1 Vision Center.
“OC1 Vision Center is an important place that God has provided for First Presbyterian Church of Orange County’s revival and future, that will (1) provide a place of spiritual growth for young generation through education and worship, (2) present a place of fellowship for the young people and others, and (3) provide a means of community outreach through the preschool and various educational programs," said Ha. "We believe through these plans the Vision Center will produce important growth for our church in the future.”
“Orange County is very competitive academically, so how can we, as a church, serve the community students? We thought of many ideas on how to fully take advantage of our new building," Kwak said, explaining how the church hopes to use the building to be a benefit to the community. "Along with the Vision School preschool and after school program, we have plans to run a SAT school for local students at a fraction of the cost of other facilities. We want to reach out to the high schools around us and emphasize the importance for students to experience life amidst their stressful academics.”
During the keynote, Soo Yoo commended FPCOC for their vision for children and the community. Yoo shared about her experiences of the church raising her to be kept on the right path and allowing her to have a vision while her parents were busy working to provide for her. She stated that through this vision, the church is rising out of its comfort zone and looking into the local neighborhoods in order to spread the gospel, rather than overseas.
A local visitor shared his excitement about the Vision School opening because of the convenience of having a preschool at a walking distance from his neighborhood.
The Vision School is set to open by the end of summer and will soon start enrolling students in the local community.