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March 22, 2024

Dear Grace Commons Family,

Happy spring! The Ceder family is excited to celebrate our first Easter with you. As we head into Holy Week you can find information below on all that we have planned. 

Holy Week Events

Maundy Thursday service (Mar 28) at 7pm in the Chapel. Emily Crider will lead us during this very meaningful time of reflection on the last meal that Jesus shared with his disciples. 

Good Friday service (Mar 29) at 7pm in the Sanctuary. Through the use of candle light, Carl Hofmann will guide us through a meditation on the suffering of Christ. This time is meant to help us grasp the magnitude of what Jesus went through in order to atone for our sin. 

Easter Sunday (Mar 31) we will offer two identical services at 9 and 11am in the Sanctuary. We look forward to a time of community during our 10am Easter Celebration, complete with tasty treats, great coffee, build-your-own flower bouquet, a photo booth and great conversation. At 10:30am, parents and grandparents can bring their children to the entrance of the Children’s Wing to take part in the Grace Commons Easter Egg Hunt.

Remember, there is no better Sunday in the calendar year to invite a friend to join us. Please consider inviting family members and friends to our Easter experiences. You never know who God might want to touch through the power of your personal invitation. 

1603 Walnut (Annex) Building Project

Many of you are wondering what is happening with the 1603 Walnut building project. Doug Smith has provided us with this update regarding how you can be in prayer: 

The 1603 Walnut project providing affordable housing, a community event space and first floor coffee shop for workforce training is moving forward. An application to the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority (CHFA) was made on February 1, 2024 and is currently under review. CHFA’s recommendation will be complete in the next few weeks and a final determination of tax credit awards will be made in late May 2024. The construction drawings have been re-submitted to the City of Boulder building department for review and approval. Initial comments from the City were minor and so we expect to receive a building permit by the end of May. If the project is awarded tax credits from CHFA we expect to move to a financial close by August 2024, commence construction immediately thereafter and complete construction within 16 months or by January 2026.

In support of the project, the Board of Trustees is finalizing the “Real Estate Partnership” documents, including the “Potential Qualified Investor List,” the “Letter of Invitation” and the “Subscription Agreement” in preparations for sending to potential qualified investors for review. This work should be completed in the next few weeks.

The Trustees are also working with our attorney to complete the LLC’s that are being established for the project. These will be completed when we receive input from CHFA in their participation in the affordable housing LLC. Trustee members have also held discussions with Moss Denver regarding the operation of the fourth floor event space and with A Precious Child regarding the operation of the first floor coffee shop and workforce training space.

Budget & Offering

Regarding our budget I have encouraging news. We are on track to finish our budget year meeting our goals for the 2023-24 year. We saw God provide a miracle by answering prayer to bring in $900,000 and thus bringing us current in our budget before Christmas. We are still thanking him for his wonderful provision. Please help us finish the Ministry Year budget strong. The Ministry Year ends June 30, and how we finish this year will impact our plans for the 2024-25 budget. We treasure your participation as this budget cycle approaches its ending.

You may have noticed that we are passing the offering plates again during worship. This decision was made with the staff’s input and with a unanimous Session vote. As you know, during the Covid era it was not possible to pass offering plates or participate in other corporate worship elements. We collectively felt that the passing of the plate, followed by singing the Doxology, was an important worship practice to reinstate at Grace Commons. We believe we all bring our lives, prayers, talents and offerings to worship, and the passing of the plate is a way for us to unify and connect in our weekly corporate worship experience. 

Ministry Plans

My heart longs to see God do a wonderful work in the Boulder Valley through our Student & Family Ministry. At Middle School Winter Camp in January, I met many local middle school students who experienced the power of worshiping Jesus together. We plan to expand our staff to at least four paid workers before the beginning of the fall semester. Please pray for discernment as we begin the search process and that God prepares the hearts of those he will be calling to serve with us. 

As Alan Balfe Iturriaga, interns Colton Hollander-Nelson and Jack Irgens and volunteers lead students on a mission trip to give back to families impacted by the Maui fire, pray for them. Pray that God continues to move in fresh and new ways through this ministry.

Annex, our college ministry, followed up a powerful Tuesday night of student testimonies which witnessed to the impact of Jesus on the lives of CU students with a spring break trip to California for a time of fellowship, worship and community building. Pray for Dave Pommer and interns, Lauren Hoodmaker, Emma Rosenberg and Rick Trapp as they create an environment that invites students to know more about Jesus.


Last week our annual BCAP (Boulder County Aids Project) Pantry food drive yielded 1572 pounds of food donations. BCAP wanted to convey their gratitude to our entire congregation: “We feel honored and blessed to have your support! All your donations help us bring hope and nourishment to our community.” Great job, Grace Commons!

Our team of devoted volunteers in the Deacons’ Closet ministry continue to serve the homeless of Boulder on Thursday mornings at Trinity Lutheran Church. Our Session is working hard to discern next steps for things related to local missions. Pray for the still forming team as they seek how God wants to use our church to demonstrate the love of Christ in our surrounding communities. 


Christine Brockett, Lindsay Waymire and Laurie N continue to intercede for our church and spearhead efforts towards all things related to Prayer Ministry. On Ash Wednesday this ministry created a self-guided reflection and prayer experience for the congregation and community to come and light a candle for world, local and personal concerns. Corrie Ten Boom used to say, “prayer must not be the spare time of the church. It must be the steering wheel.” I am so encouraged by how I see prayer driving all the initiatives of our church. We are visioning and planning for a full-time prayer room which we hope continues to inspire. Stay tuned for details of more opportunities to pray for Grace Commons.

We were pleased to once again play a role in hosting the Boulder International Film Festival. If you were one of the volunteers, thank you so very much for helping demonstrate our heart to show warm hospitality to our beloved city. The hero of the weekend was Don Gallotte, who was there the entire weekend and did so much to be a fantastic ambassador for the church. He was always smiling and enthusiastic. I love that our church is tethered to this artistic event and look forward to brainstorming more ways we can be a blessing in this annual special event. 

Men's Life wrapped up another year of early morning breakfast, teaching and small group time. Jeff Gagliardi, Warren Williams and Craig Pierce along with many volunteers provide a place where men can grow in their faith, find connections and become a blessing to others. Men's Ministry leadership values your prayers as they consider other ways to engage with men.

The staff of Grace Commons work faithfully to lead ministries that make an impact on Boulder and beyond. In future Leadership Updates in the coming months, I will highlight additional ministries and our gifted staff. From young adult retreats, to blessing families in times of grief, to programs for Infants to 5th graders—your staff is hard at work. I am grateful to be part of such a gifted team.

T.E.D. Leadership

One final item that covets your prayers is the T.E.D. team as they discern the next group of individuals to serve as trustees, elders and deacons for the next three years. Their work will be coming to a close soon, and the nominees will be presented to Session and then to the congregation for a final vote.

I continue to be encouraged by the unity, humility, and excellence of our Elders, Trustees and Deacons. I could not be more proud of the work they are doing and the spirit in which they are doing it. Please pray for them as they truly love Jesus and Grace Commons Church with an extraordinary spirit. 

I remain so humbled and honored to be the pastor at Grace Commons. We will watch together how the Holy Spirit will work at Easter and the weeks ahead.

With love, 


Past Leadership Updates

1820 15th St, Boulder, CO 80302 | 303.402.6400

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