By Cody Willoughby
TROY — The congregation of Troy Baptist Temple, located on Staunton Road, will be ringing in the holiday in their new fellowship hall, located across the property from the Temple’s main building. The expansion will open with a premiere luncheon and commemorative service following regular morning services on Sunday, Dec. 24.
The new building features an auditorium to accommodate the church’s entire congregation, along with a fully-equipped kitchen and four classrooms.
“It became clear that we’d outgrown the space we had,” said Pastor David Thomasson. “Whenever we met for fellowship dinners or special events, we’d fill the entire auditorium along with the lobby and other areas for overflow.”
Thomasson came to First Baptist Temple in March 2015, and despite knowing immediately that the property required growth, it was more important to address other priorities first.
“In my first year and a half here, we focused on making improvements to the existing property,” said Thomasson. “I believed we needed to take care of what we already had. I told the congregation that I believed if we’d be good stewards in taking care of what God had already given us, it would bode well in His provision for our other needs.”
The raising of funds for the new expansion began in 2016.
“Some money had been saved from previous years, but we needed more,” said Thomasson. “Each year, we have a stewardship banquet to raise funds for improvements and future developments. A year ago, we began to meet about starting the program to build the fellowship hall, and on April 9, we had our groundbreaking. We had some delays, but the work continued to move forward. We got our final inspection approved yesterday morning, and we’re looking forward to having our first gathering this Sunday for a Christmas Eve lunch after the morning service.”
According to Thomasson, property improvements still have not concluded.
“We are adding a covered entrance to the main entrance of our auditorium, which will be done in the next six to eight weeks. It’s been a great three years here, and it’s been my honor and joy to be pastor. After 23 years of full-time ministry, these have been the best, for sure.”
The leaders of Troy Baptist Temple hope to use the fellowship hall as a means of ministry in many ways.
“The pastor would like to see the building used for a lot of events,” said Pastoral Assistant Michael Betzner. “We’ve got a great sound system set up here, so it’s equipped to house full services with music. Equipment is available for video presentations. Paster Thomasson would love to use it as well as a means to reach out to the community, for things like funeral services and wedding receptions. It’s been an exciting process, and we’re happy to move forward.”
For more information, visit www.troybaptisttemple.com.