Rise City Church donates $40,000 to new Lakeside Library

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The news of the generous donation hit early this week when Pastor Brandon Grant of Rise City Church in Lakeside emailed the Friends of the Library board members to inform them about the congregation’s decision to donate $40,000 toward building the new library in town. This donation is “a portion of our annual Christmas Offering” that took place on Dec. 17 at the church, as Grant mentioned.

The news of the generous donation hit early this week when Pastor Brandon Grant of Rise City Church in Lakeside emailed the Friends of the Library board members to inform them about the congregation’s decision to donate $40,000 toward building the new library in town. This donation is “a portion of our annual Christmas Offering” that took place on Dec. 17 at the church, as Grant mentioned.

“We are excited and honored to be able to help and invest in our community,” he said. Grant made this decision after meeting with Kathy Kassel, the President/CEO of the Lakeside Chamber of Commerce, who informed him about the community efforts to build a new library. 

This extraordinary donation comes right after the San Diego County finalized the purchase of two acres on a four acres parcel on Woodside Ave., near Otavio’s Italian Restaurant. Charles Jarman, with the Capital Projects & Facilities at the San Diego County Library informed the board during the recent annual meeting that the county does not have a timeline yet to approve the construction funds. However, Lakeside has to raise $100,000 for furniture, fixtures and equipment. Leslie Ward, Lakeside Friends of the Library treasurer committed to raise the sum, and the board deposited $40,000 with the San Diego Foundation toward this goal.

With the very generous donation coming right before Christmas from Rise City Church, Lakeside is suddenly very close to being ready to decide on the design, invest in the technology and furnishing for the new library. 

According to the San Diego Park and Recreation who owns the existent library, the building is too old to be preserved and it may be demolished to make room for a new project. In the meantime, Lakeside will move from a 5,000 square feet building to a 17,000 square feet facility designed for the third millennium, with new technology and proper space for special programs designated for all ages. 

Rise City Church is located close to the intersection of Woodside Ave with Winter Garden Blvd, not too far from where the new library will be built, now with the congregation’s invaluable support. Grant, his wife Jamie and their four children live in Santee now, after moving to the East County from Illinois a decade ago, He founded the church in Lakeside in 2013, along with four other families. The church offers programs for children (newborn to 5th grade) and youth and professes that it’s not “pastor-centered,” but focused on active service for the community through volunteering and donations. Two of the church’s official values are “Community-Focused, Investment Over Isolation” and “Action-Oriented, Give Over Get.” The recent Christmas gift of $40,000, which will help bring a much-needed new and better library to the people of Lakeside, is a testament to the church’s mission statement. 

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