Trinity Wall Street to close Connecticut conference center

Posted May 24, 2012

[Trinity Wall Street] The Rev. James H. Cooper, rector of Trinity Wall Street, announced the closure of Trinity’s conference center in West Cornwall in a May 24 letter to the parish. The full letter follows.

A Letter From The Rector

May 24, 2012
Dear Trinity Family,

I am writing today to inform you of a decision undertaken by the current Vestry. After extensive study, conversation, and deliberation, it has been decided that the Trinity Conference Center in West Cornwall, Connecticut, will cease operations effective in November.

The Trinity Conference Center was created so that non-profit and religious organizations could have access to a first-class site for conferences and retreats at reduced and accessible rates. For countless vestries, parishioners, grassroots organizations, and non-profit leaders, the center was a place where excellence in hospitality and beautiful surroundings inspired reflection, conversation, and the kind of being together that truly brought people together. By the banks of the Housatonic River was a peaceful retreat from the fray available at a fraction of the cost of similar facilities.

This is the vision Trinity was able to subsidize and keep alive for more than twenty years.

The decision-making around closure was not made lightly, because all involved deeply understand how the conference center has touched so many people’s lives, including the people of Trinity parish. While not an easy decision to reach, removing parish resources from the conference-center business is a final one. As we begin the process of closing, we enter a period of discernment regarding the best use for its surrounding land, which has been in the parish’s care since 1945.

I am committed to a closing that is as graceful as the hospitality the conference center offered. Clients booked after November are being notified directly with deposits returned. Staff, both full-time and part-time, are being offered end-of-service packages. I thank the staff past and present for their efforts, particularly recognizing Fr. Bob Griffiths and Jon and Wendy Denn. I also thank those parish leaders who had the unique vision for a place such as this, and the townspeople of West Cornwall.

Closing the Trinity Conference Center does not end the relationships that were formed there, nor the ideas formed among the people of good faith and conscience who gathered there. The center helped galvanize groups and build bridges between people. I am saddened at its close, but glad for the good it did. I know I share these bittersweet feelings with many today.

The Rev. Dr. James H. Cooper