After 51 days with no measurable rainfall at all, Monday was Austin’s rainiest day in more than three years and, in just one afternoon, we cut this year’s deficit nearly in half—good news for a community that is in extreme drought! While I celebrate the restoration that the rain can bring, this heavy downpour also stressed our historic Sanctuary Building’s roof system.

In particular, the cast-stone cornice around the perimeter of the building, which sustained damage during the freeze in February 2021, shows evidence that intense rain has further accelerated the deterioration of that ornamental moulding. Upon initial inspection, the most impacted areas are at the corners of the Sanctuary Building where water can accumulate.

Out of an abundance of caution, several exterior doors in the affected areas of the Sanctuary Building will be temporarily inaccessible while we continue to be in a state of assessment.

The following entrances/exits that are normally available on Sundays will be closed this week:

  • the Sanctuary main entrance (Front Steps),
  • Colorado 3 (Choir Room),
  • the South Entrance (12th Street),
  • and the breezeway staircase adjacent to the Sanctuary that descends from street level to the Lavaca 4 (Library ) entrance.

Open entrances/exits include:

  • Lavaca 1 (Education Building Front Steps),
  • Lavaca 4 (Library),
  • Lavaca 5 (Upper Breezeway),
  • the Upper and Lower Breezeways,
  • the ascending staircase from the street level to the Lavaca 5 (Upper Breezeway) entrance,
  • and the descending staircase from street level to the Lavaca 2 (Education Building) entrance; this staircase can also be used to reach the Lavaca 4 (Library) entrance to the Sanctuary Building by walking through the Lower Breezeway.

For those with mobility concerns, please plan to use the North Entrance (adjacent to the parking lot), which has easy elevator access to the entire Education Building, and through which the Sanctuary can also be reached by elevator.

I realize that this sounds complicated if your regular routes into the Sanctuary Building will not be available. I am including an annotated campus map below in hopes that it helps make clear which entrances will be open on Sunday morning.

Please be assured that we will have plenty of extra people on campus to greet you and guide you to open entrances and through the building so that you can enjoy worship, Sunday School, and other small groups as usual throughout the morning…and you won’t want to miss this Sunday!

We are hosting a number of important and exciting conversations about parenting, playfulness as a spiritual practice, and next steps in our advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community and Reproductive Freedom.

Know that every day, I thank God for you and for the spiritual refuge in the storms of life that this faith community is for so many.


With persistent peace,
Pastor Taylor