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Rising from the ashes

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Jamison Alexander on the keyboards / Dallus Whitfield photo

Local church returns home Oct. 26
It has been two years since an electrical fire destroyed the Lebanon Church of God.

However, the congregation, led by Pastor Andrew Valentine, never lost their faith that their church home would be restored. They simply moved services to the Market Street Community Center until a new building could be completed.

Sunday, Oct. 26, church members will travel from Market Street to their beautiful new church building at 600 C.L. Manier Street to celebrate with a dedication and ribbon cutting at 10:45 a.m.

The new church spans 14,000 square feet and consists of a sanctuary, office space, a baptismal room, classrooms, a kitchen and large fellowship hall. Valentine said the space, constructed by Cliff Carey, is twice the size of their former building. Two pieces from their former building, a communion table and statue of Jesus, were salvaged from the fire and will be present in their new home.

The additional space will allow Valentine to better accommodate the growing congregation. When Valentine stepped into the pastor's position 33 years ago he said there were "five cars in the parking lot and maybe 50 members." That number has grown to 300 today.

"I have seen generations be born and grow up here who now have children of their own," he said. "What I have really enjoyed is watching the growth and development of people. They start out as caterpillars and turn into butterflies.

"I've seen people come in at rock bottom and develop - that's been the reward."

A worship service will be conducted on the 26th beginning at 11 a.m.

Staff Writer Sabrina Garrett may be contacted at sgarrett@wilsonpost.com.

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