WORLD REPORT

Fort Worth Rededication

A special rededication weekend was held at the Apostolic Faith Church in Fort Worth, Texas, on December 10-12. During the previous winter, Fort Worth had experienced some unusually cold weather, resulting in frozen pipes bursting in the church building and causing extensive damage. The building was not useable while it was being renovated, but after it was repaired and beautifully refurbished, the congregation wanted to rededicate it to God’s service.

The Friday evening service began with a trumpet selection and later, the choir sang “Jesus, Hold My Hand.” Before the sermon, a men’s trio sang “Keep on Believing.” Josephine McElveen, District Superintendent for the Southern and Eastern Churches, read Psalm 51:12 for her text, bringing out that just as the church building had been physically restored, God will spiritually restore all who surrender their lives to Him.

A delicious barbecue dinner was served on Saturday evening, and the wonderful time of fellowship was an encouragement to everyone who attended.

The rededication service on Sunday morning began with the orchestra playing a couple of selections. Mia Shaw, from Orlando, Florida, played “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” on the keyboard. Ozell Byrd, the longest-attending member of the Fort Worth congregation, gave an overview of the origin of the church. At one time, the building was used as a machine shop, and in 1995, Pearl Lockett Jr. purchased the building to hold church services. Even though renovations still needed to be done, the opening service was held on April 30, 1995. After many garage sales and other fundraisers to complete the project, the church was officially dedicated on May 5, 1996. Brother Pearl pastored the Fort Worth church for many years with his wife, Doris, by his side, and they held their sixtieth wedding anniversary celebration at the church. When Brother Pearl retired from pastoring due to health concerns, Verena McElroy worked with the youth until Ernest Marshall and his wife, Joyce, were able to move from Denver, Colorado, in 2011 so Brother Ernest could assume the pastorate. A video of the church’s history and renovations was shown, followed by the choir singing “Let’s Just Praise the Lord.” Before the sermon, a soloist sang “Bless This House.”

Bob Downey, Director of North America Work, read 2 Chronicles 7:1-3 for his text, bringing out that just as the glory of the Lord filled Solomon’s Temple when it was dedicated, the prayer is that God’s presence would fill this newly renovated sanctuary in the days to come as Jesus tarries.

All who attended the rededication weekend were encouraged and blessed by how the Lord provided and helped the workers with the beautiful renovations on the church building. Brother Ernest and the Fort Worth congregation are looking to God to use this building for His glory, with the hope that many souls will be saved there before Jesus returns.

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