Florala church getting help rebuilding

Published 12:28 am Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A Burke Concrete Finisher employee works on the foundation of the new Westside Baptist Church in Florala, with the fellowship hall in the background.

They’re workin’ on a building – or at least that’s what was happening Tuesday at the former Westside Baptist Church site in Florala.

Pastor Phil McMillian said workers were putting the finishing touches on the church’s new foundation after a May 2009 fire destroyed the previous structure.

Now, thanks to a partnership with the volunteer organization “Carpenters for Christ” and two other church organizations, work will begin in March on the church building.

“As part of their ongoing ministry, Carpenters for Christ have volunteered eight days of their time in March to dry in the church,” McMillian said. “We prayed that the Lord would pave the way for a new church, and He did.”

McMillan said discussions were held over the summer on how to secure a new building. Since the fire, services have been held in a portable building, which sat directly in front of the building’s former foundation.

“The whole project is really a step of faith for us,” McMillian said. “If we had to pay out of pocket for this church it would cost us somewhere around $300,000, and we all know we didn’t have that kind of money.”

Through the CFC program, volunteers assist a “construction need for the Lord’s work” by attempting to “build the body of Christ world wide through physically constructing orphanages, shelters and worship centers.” Those using the program are only required to provide materials for the project and to assist in securing supplies to help feed the volunteers.

The group traveling to Florala will consist of 75 volunteers and 25 cooks. They will be housed at Florala’s First Baptist Church.

“When they leave here, it will begin to look like a church,” McMillian said. “Then in April, there’s a group of 20 from the First Baptist Church in Palatka, Fla., who is coming to finish the inside. After that, we think we have another group who’s going to come and lay the brickwork. When it’s all said and done, we’ll have our church back.”

Church members have hosted an assortment of fundraising to help with the building costs. Another, this one a bake sale and yard sale, is set for Saturday beginning at 8 a.m.

“Right now, we’re asking for prayers and support in our efforts to rebuild God’s house,” McMillian said. “Anyone who feels moved to help us in any way, shape or form, it would be greatly appreciated.”

Those wishing to make donations to the building fund may mail them to P.O. Box 253, Florala, AL 36442 or contact Barbara Holley at 334-858-6623.