A Sunnyslope church is getting a major facelift as a way to provide a more open, inviting space for arts to flourish.
Diana West, the senior pastor at Victory Vineyard Church, which is located at 321 W. Hatcher Road, said when she and her now late husband, Senior Pastor Greg West, started the church they planned to focus on offering recovery programs. The church has hosted Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings, as well as Celebrate Recovery, grief share and co-dependency groups. But West said the “season for that right now is done” and she and her team want to provide something different for the community. Many other churches in the area are already hosting recovery groups.
West, who has a master’s degree in professional counseling and also is an expressive arts therapist, said she wants the church to transform into a place for artists to offer classes and create work. She also envisions Victory Vineyard Church as hosting residents who would gain spiritual direction by working with a facilitator, who would guide them through art, music, dance and painting. West said the church already hosted an art show in 2019.
“We started to lean more into the arts and wanting to do more art for our kids and our adults,” she said. “We started getting involved in the arts crawls and other businesses trying to break through with art on the canal. I felt we need a refreshing. We need to rebrand or remodel and really try to provide something new for Sunnyslope.”
Walls have been torn down and the church now has an open space without individual rooms that will allow for people to socially distance themselves from each other while working on art at different tables. Additional bathrooms have been installed, including one that has an area where visitors can wash paintbrushes. New colors, including gray, white and teal are being added on the walls to create what West called “an industrial farmhouse look.” A local business volunteered to pay for the renovation, which is worth about $50,000 to $60,000, but the company did not want its name released, she said.
West said she hoped the renovations would be done this month. She and her husband began meeting with others in a Glendale home in 2007. They quickly outgrew that space and held their first official service for Victory Vineyard Church in the Sunnyslope area in 2008. Then the church moved to its first building in Sunnyslope in 2014. There is capacity for 65 people to attend one service at the congregation but the largest it has seen is 48 people. The non-denominational Christian church is part of Vineyard USA, a movement of hundreds of evangelical congregations in the country.
To learn more, visit victoryvineyardchurch.com.