Sacred Places Fall 2011 - Page 19

Christ Church and Christ Church Burial Ground in Philadelphia, PA, draw about 250,000 visitors annually. The Christ Church Preservation Trust manages the tourist and visitor programs, and helps to raise funds for the maintenance and preservation of both sites. This emphasis on community use and support has always been Calvary Center’s goal, and it is what has made the building such a strong and active neighborhood center. To help define the scope of Calvary Center’s purpose, multiple public meetings were held to determine what people wanted to see in the space. Calvary Center’s mission explicitly includes a commitment to supporting the arts, thanks to input from community leaders, and multiple arts groups share space in the building. No matter what your ultimate fundraising and organizational goals might be, a friends group is a solid and straightforward place to start. Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Christ Church, and Calvary UMC had very different goals in creating their supporting organizations. The three congregations also utilized various organizational routes to obtain their goals, but at the start of each effort was a small and unincorporated group of friends with a shared desire to work together to save a historic sacred place that mattered to them. Sacred Places • Fall 2011 • 18