Messiah Lifeways® at Messiah Village Announces $80 Million Expansion Now Complete

MECHANICSBURG, PA (January 26, 2018) – Messiah Lifeways®, the faith-based non-profit that provides a network of services for adults aged 55 and better, is celebrating the completion of the first phase of Project Envision with an open house & tours on Saturday, January 27 from 11 am through 3 pm.

“To say this is a bright new chapter in retirement living & vibrant wellness and lifestyle venues for older adults would be an understatement,” says CEO Curt Stutzman. “Beyond offering a large number of beautiful residential and personal care apartments, this grand opening includes incredible wellness, lifelong learning, day spa, and dining amenities for anyone age 55 and better to enjoy.”

The public is invited for guided tours of Village Square, including model apartment homes, the John N. Hostetter Enrichment Center, the Center for Vitality & Wellness with its zero-entry saltwater pool, and Cerise Day Spa, which features a salt wall relaxation room, manicure/pedicure stations, and more. Visitors can purchase lunch at Café 100, proudly offering Starbucks coffee and tea beverages, or at Kathryn’s on the Square, two new dining venues in Village Square. Tours will also highlight spacious personal care apartments in Hopewell, a new Enhanced Living neighborhood with 26 apartments.

In 2017, Messiah Lifeways served 2,955 persons through 12 service lines; only about 750 of those persons live at the Messiah Village or Mount Joy Country Homes resident campuses. “This expansion gives physical space to continue our legacy of serving older adults in many ways – whether they choose to live in a resident community or age in place in their home,” states Kristen Heisey, Senior VP for Mission Advancement. “Hundreds of our neighbors already enjoy our Pathways Institute for Lifelong Learning® classes and our existing Wellness Center was bursting at the seams! It’s a great time to be 55 and better in Central PA.”

Follow us on Facebook (@MessiahLifeways), Twitter (@MessiahLifeways) and/or Instagram (@MessiahLifewaysPix).

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About Messiah Lifeways®
Messiah Lifeways offers a network of opportunities for adults 55 and better in South Central Pennsylvania. Recognizing that there are many ways to experience life, Messiah Lifeways offers life coaching, enrichment opportunities, community support services,and resident communities. Founded in 1896, Messiah Lifeways originally operated a home for widows and orphans in the city of Harrisburg, first on Bailey Street and later on Paxton Street. Messiah Lifeways, now based in Mechanicsburg, is a non-profit sponsored by the Brethren in Christ Church.

Major Traffic Pattern Changes at Messiah Village

As we get closer to welcoming the first residents to move into Village Square this fall, several major changes will happen with our Mt. Allen entrances and parking around campus. On September 29, the old main entrance will be reopened to traffic and will bring visitors into the newly expanded Purple parking lot. This lot will be primarily for guests as door #1 will be the preferred entry point for the Village Center. This newly designed road coming into campus will be known as the Village Way entrance. On October 2, the temporary two-way “main” entrance and exit near Messiah Circle/Donegal will return to a one-way exit only. Please use extreme caution. Measures are being taken, including road signage, to advise drivers of the change in traffic patterns. You will also note new directional and way-finding signs being installed around October 2 in preparation for the new buildings and patterns.

Team member parking is being adjusted. The back row of the new Purple lot will be for team members with parking tags. The Yellow Lot near the chapel will transition from guest parking to team member parking on October 2. Please note that Wellness and U-GRO spots will remain designated near the Chapel. The Wellness spots will become guest parking spots early next year when the Center for Vitality & Wellness is fully operational.

Messiah Circle Reopens

On October 2, the portion of Messiah Circle that has been closed off during construction (under the Kibler Bridge) will reopen so a continuous driving loop will be restored. Please note, however, that access to the actual Village Square building is currently limited to incoming Village Square residents when they move in and the staff supporting them until November 8 when common spaces open. In the meantime, you can enjoy driving or walking under the Kibler Bridge!

Resident & Guest Services

The Village Center Resident & Guest Services (formerly known as the receptionist desk) will return to its original location near the Gift Development Office & Wagner Transitional Care.On September 29, residents and team members will need a FOB/badge to swipe at the Chapel doors. Guests can also use the Chapel stenophone system, between 7 am & 7 pm, to call the desk and request entry. After 7 pm, anyone without a FOB/badge will need to enter door #1 as the Resident & Guest Services


Simply the Best 2017

Messiah Lifeways at Messiah Village is honored to be named again as Simply the Best Long-Term Care Facility by readers of Harrisburg Magazine in the 2017 Simply the Best awards. Key leaders from our nursing administration team celebrated the event and received our award at the celebration held at the Radisson.

Messiah Village and AT&T team up to keep older adults connected

Reports released in 2017 from the Pew Internet and American Life project show that while older adults are using devices such as tablet computers and cell phones in increasing numbers, they continue to lag behind the overall adult population. That’s why Messiah Village and AT&T employees from Central Pennsylvania on August 31, 2017, teamed up for a program to help older adults learn how they can use wireless phones and tablets to improve their lives.

AT&T employees from Central Pennsylvania helped Messiah Village residents learn more about how to use smartphones and tablet computers to enable them to get better connected to family and friends. During the free program, residents learned how to navigate the Internet, recognize scams, keep private information secure, back-up data and more. State Representative Sheryl Delozier also stopped by the event to talk about the importance of keeping Pennsylvanians of all ages – especially older adults – connected and engaged.

“Now more than ever, services of all kinds are offered online – from continuing education courses and consultations with physicians to accessing benefits, grocery shopping, watching your favorite TV program, and much more,” Delozier said. “That’s why events like these are so important – companies like AT&T making important connections with and for older adults like those who live in Messiah Village. I’m glad the two organizations could team up on such an important project.”

According to Matthew Gallardo, Director of Community Engagement and Coaching for Messiah Lifeways, the event was another example of Messiah Lifeways enhancing the lives of older adults based on their needs and interests.

“Several months ago we were approached by a resident’s family asking about technology training, specifically for cell phone usage and safety,” Gallardo said “Messiah Lifeways Coaching, which provides consumer guidance and education, coordinated this event with AT&T to help give our residents a better understanding of smartphones and tablets so they could have a better user experience as technology becomes more and more mainstream with seniors.”

AT&T employees from Central Pennsylvania were joined by State Rep. Sheryl Delozier at a Digital You training program for residents of Messiah Village.  The event was coordinated by Nicole Dixon, an AT&T regional manager in Central Pennsylvania. Seven other AT&T employees were on site to help answer residents’ questions about their wireless devices.

“Our employees are involved in our communities in many ways. Events like this one give us a chance to help Central Pennsylvanians get the most from their wireless devices and to better connect to each other and their world,” Dixon said. “We’re grateful to the team at Messiah Village for welcoming us to campus. It was a great day.”

Partial Road Closure July 26-27

Upper Allen Township has indicated that a portion of Mount Allen Drive will be closed July 26-27.  This will affect ALL traffic entering our campus from the Route 15/ Winding Hill  interchange.

  • Directional sign boards will be in place.
  • The suggested route for Messiah Village visitors would be to use the Bowmansdale exit from Rt. 15, then to Kim Acres Drive.  From there, entrance can be made at the West side of campus, or follow Nittany Drive which leads back to Mt. Allen Drive.

Please take note of this temporary change in traffic pattern. Thank you!

It Ain’t Broke, So Why Did We Fix It?

The name Messiah Village wasn’t broken. It was and still is a highly recognized and well respected brand. However, despite not being broken, it did have some flaws. It no longer fully represented who we are and what we do. We expected during this transition period there would be growing pains and much of the terminology changes, especially “Messiah Lifeways”, would take some getting used to. But the rebranding question recently came up while I sat in on a meeting with a vendor who is helping us fine tune our website. This prompted me to write this entry. She didn’t fully grasp the change from Messiah Village to Messiah Lifeways. She’s not the first and certainly won’t be the last. Now for those of us who work or live at Messiah Village, the new moniker and culture change has been instilled over the last year, and I think it’s fair to say for most “Messiah Lifeways” has grown on us and makes sense. For those who still don’t fully understand and for those who are new to Messiah Lifeways, let me try and explain.

First, it’s important to note that in our nearly 117-year heritage, this is not the first time we changed our name; it’s actually the third. In our humble beginnings, back in 1896, we were known as the Messiah Rescue and Benevolent Home, which begot the Messiah Home, which then became Messiah Village in the late 1970’s after moving from Paxton Street to our current location on Mt. Allen Drive. There is one main difference with this third variation compared to the first two – the name Messiah Village has not been eliminated. Therefore, Messiah Village still exists, but it has simply given way to Messiah Lifeways as the “parent brand.” Messiah Village no longer represents the entire brand; it’s now just a division of the brand.

Messiah Home gave way to Messiah Village & is now known as Messiah Village at Messiah Lifeways

Next, it’s important to address why the name change occurred. I like to describe this change as an evolution or a metamorphosis. For much of our existence we have made it part of our mission to serve people both on and off our campus. But the majority of who we serve have either lived in the “home” or in the “village.” That was fine for a time, but after moving to Mt. Allen Drive, our evolution really started to gain momentum.

We continually adapt with the times and despite encouraging people to become residents here, we knew that most people wanted another alternative, which was to age in place. Aging in place is, quite simply, staying in your own home or current residence and bringing services in and using supplemental services to help you stay where you are. Aging in place is a term you’ll hear quite a lot these days, but it’s something that we embraced as far back as 25+ years ago when we formed our own home care agency and then several years later an adult day program. The commitment to help individuals age in place along with offering enrichment opportunities like our wellness center and Pathways Institute for Lifelong Learning are just a few examples that shows the broad range or spectrum of services that could no longer be fully represented by a single site. Messiah Village implies that single site, and while it makes sense to the residents who live on this campus, the name Messiah Lifeways makes more sense and captures the essence of what we do for the many people we serve both on and off this campus.

Messiah Lifeways is the umbrella name that encompasses the eleven different services that we provide and, to reiterate, Messiah Village happens to be one of those eleven offerings or divisions.

Finally, the name Messiah Lifeways is representative of the journey we encourage our residents, clients and families to take, in that there are many ways to live life. We also hope that Messiah Lifeways can inspire older adults to more fully embrace life in the ways that suit them.

I hope this helps people understand the name change. Evolution and growth have made it necessary over the years for us to restate who we are. Times change and so do names. It will take time, but soon enough, Messiah Lifeways will gain the brand recognition and strength to become regular part of the lexicon here in Central Pa.

Please share your comments below on what Messiah Lifeways means to you!