[Close-up] Touching Moments During New Church Construction
By Yi Yang, May 15, 2017 23:05 PM
"I will never forget the brothers and sisters who love God and went to great efforts throughout the four-year construction period. They helped with cooking, carrying rebar, handling paperwork, purchasing materials, and much more despite the extreme weather," said Rev. Huang Wu, the senior pastor of Xiaogan Church in the church's dedication ceremony on May 1, 2017.
He said that the construction began with a vacant land where there were no electricity, water or road. They need to fill the ponds, build roads and fences. During that period, they encountered many difficulties and outward obstructions.
Huang shared some moving moments during the construction with CCD. When the construction was hindered by the local authority, a dozen elderly believers sat at stools in the shade on a dike in the summer to prevent the construction from being forcibly demolished while singing hymns and prayer. In the winter, they came to the construction site by bus and watched for the church. "At that time, I was at the site every day and saw them on a regular basis." He denoted that this bought the construction some time. Even the church staff still poured concrete on some nights. Later, the building project was going well after their negotiation with the authority.
Besides, eighty or ninety believers spared no effort to go through the formalities, make meals and purchase materials. They shopped around to save money and many of them participated in steel bar binding when it came to building the foundations. Since it was impossible to pour concrete on the rainy days of the summer, they pumped the water out and removed the mud to continue the concrete work.
The church bought office furniture and material on credit from several believers and the payment has not been made as of now. The total expenditure, including covering the furnishings and decoration, is over a million yuan less than the estimated cost, thanks to the voluntary believers, careful calculation and strict budgeting made by the co-workers. "The church construction started with less than 300,000 yuan. This was really the grace of God." He added.
The Gospel was first introduced to Xiaogan in 1862 by Griffith John, a Welsh Christian missionary, and he founded the church in the city. Later, some British missionaries preached the Gospel here in succession. After the founding of New China, a Chinese pastor was sent by Hubei CCC& TSPM to pastor in the church in 1951, when the number of the congregation reached more than 200.
In 2012, Huang Wu was sent to nurture the church and built the new church with the construction area of 4700 m2 or 1.16 acres. Marking as the first church built in downtown Xiaogan since the 20th century, it can hold 1,500 people for services. Around seventy or eighty percent of the congregation are elderly people.
Translated by Karen Luo
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