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Shepherd of the Hills Breaks Ground on a Miracle in the Making

February 25, 2015 Update

Paula Cracium, PRNC President and Director of Development for Shepherd of the Hills Church presented the construction plans for Shepherd of the Hill Church, Cafe, and Prayer Tower to the PRNC Land Use Committee on February 24, 2015. She confirmed that the plans were presented to the PRNC about five years ago, when it was approved by the PRNC (letter of support) and then went through the usual City approval process. Construction has begun and is planned for completion mid 2016.

The Prayer Tower overlooks the valley on all four sides and will be about 55-60' tall. There will be both an elevator and steps to go up the tower. There will be an outside patio with seating, a cafe and bookstore, water feature that doubles as a baptismal fount. The twelve light towers will call out the 12 tribes of Israel and the 12 apostles.

Currently the church uses the sanctuary and the Family Life Center for overflow seating. The combined capacity is 2,300. The church has five services and is hoping to reduce the number of services with the completion of the 3,500 seat sanctuary. The old sanctuary will be divided into a children's theater space and classrooms.

Past PRNC President Mel Mitchell inquired about the July 4th Spectacular. Cracium has thought through alternate plans carefully, expecting to move vendors to the street area. A small section of Rinaldi would be closed on the morning of July 4th and more of it would be closed as the event began. Viewers could also sit at the Medical building parking lot. She also mentioned that Shepherd does a luncheon for all the Porter Ranch store managers in July so that they can get to know each other.

Meeting attendees inquired about dirt being hauled from Shepherd to the lot just west of the Porter Ranch Community School. Cracium noted that they have not moved any dirt at this point, as they have just removed the asphalt from the parking lot. They have a permit to move dirt because they thought they might need to acquire dirt, or remove dirt. At this time, they don't expect to need to move any dirt.

There was also a question regarding the Porter Ranch Specific Plan and a child care center requirement. The childcare center at Shepherd was identified as the center that would complete that requirement, but Shepherd is not fulfilling any requirement for a senior center.

If you have any specific concerns about construction, you may contact the Church Office at 818-831-9333.

It should be noted that the expansion plan was considered during three meetings in 2009 and supported by the PRNC at that time.

Construction Presentation

Click below to listen to the Shepherd of the Hills Construction Presentation.

January 26, 2015

Hundreds of people from the community came out to celebrate Shepherd of the Hills Groundbreaking Ceremony for their new 3,500 seat sanctuary Sunday, January 25, 2014. State Assemblyman Scott Wilk and City Council Member Mitchell Englander were among the local dignitaries on hand personally presenting commendations and wishing Shepherd well. Representing the Porter Ranch Neighborhood Council were President Paula Cracium and board members Cheri Derohanian, Alex Kim and Armando Nunez II.

President Paula Cracium and board members Armando Nunez II, Cheri Derohanian, and Alex Kim join Pastor Dudley Rutherford.

Pastor Dudley Rutherford explained that the project was designed by the same group that designed Downtown Disney. They began by surveying the congregation and found that the church was very focused on the Word of God and was likely the most diverse church in Los Angeles. They developed their design with those two concepts in mind. The main building will have a cafe and bookstore. The walking path from the parking lot past the sanctuary along the length of the property towards the childcare area will be lit with twelve torchlike lights. The lights are likened to the northern lights of the aurora borealis, which are true north, which is known to be slightly northwest. Pastor Rutherford noted that Shepherd's location was northwest of Hollywood, so Shepherd's lights would be like the northern lights in relationship to Hollywood.

View of the new sanctuary to be constructed at Shepherd of the Hills Church

View showing torchlike lights and prayer tower

Also planned is the construction of a prayer tower with sweeping views of the valley. Pastor Dudley noted that he was speaking from the exact spot where the pulpit will be and the attendees were likewise seated where the sanctuary will be.

The Porter Ranch Neighborhood Council President, Paula Cracium, who is also the Director of Development at Shepherd of the Hills, was on hand to emcee the ceremony. In his remarks Pastor Rutherford told the story of how the annual fireworks celebration came to be: it was the brain child of Paula Cracium who cobbled together sponsorships to get it off the ground and grow it to the spectacular event that it is today.

Construction is due to be complete spring 2016. Find out more about this building project at Miracle in the Making.

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The Porter Ranch Neighborhood Council is an organization that is officially certified by the City of Los Angeles to increase our influence with City lawmakers and departments to improve our community.

The PRNC came about as a result of Los Angeles City Charter Reform and interested stakeholders in our community. The Board is elected by stakeholders and holds monthly meetings, usually on the first Wednesday of the month. The agenda is emailed to those who subscribe (see the green box in the upper corner), on our website here and posted at 11280 Corbin Avenue, Northridge, CA 91326 on a bulletin board facing Corbin street.

The Board is comprised of volunteers who want to help you make Porter Ranch a better place to live, work and grow. We can't do it for you, but we can do it with you.

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