Church Rejoices in New Sanctuary - - The News for South Mississippi

Church Rejoices in New Sanctuary

"Just to be back in the sanctuary, just barely a year after Hurricane Katrina. You'd never believe the beauty that surrounds us here, only the Lord can do that," church leaders said.

It was nearly a full house Sunday morning at the Calvary Baptist church, as members and visitors filled the pews - a first, since Hurricane Katrina.   

 "We had 50 people that met in that courtyard out there in folding chairs," Pastor Johnny Beaver said.     

A little more than a year ago, this church was left without a sanctuary, as the waters of Katrina filled the aisles where members once walked.

Folding chairs were the only seats visitors had for many months.   

"I thought it might be the day that we closed the doors of this church. I had no idea what God was doing all around our world by mobilizing people to come and help care for us," Beaver said.   

But now there are new pews, new carpet, and even new Bibles to replace those Katrina washed away. 

Pastor Beaver says that without the help of volunteers, their recovery would have never been possible.    

"Not only did gifts of money come in, but also gifts of help came in. We've had between 2 and 3,000 mission team members that have come," Beaver said.        

Now, members of this church, both young and old, can celebrate a building they hope will last for generations to come.   

"To be able to come back and see the smiles on their faces and to see how encouraged they are," Beaver said. "That's why it's exciting to me."   

By Keli Rabon

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