Tim Leeds Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
A project decades in the planning and a few more years in the construction comes to fruition this week when the Opening Celebration of the new Seventh-day Adventist Church is held Saturday at 11 a.m.. “This is kind of a miracle building,” said Leo Beardsley, a Building Committee member. The new church, the ground breaking of which was held in June 2006, is located in Meadow Lark Estates next to the Havre Christian School, which is operated by the church. The school and church are located on 9th Street West, just off of U.S. Highway 87 at the top of the hill not far south from the highway’s intersection with U.S. Highway 2. Beardsley said many people participated in the construction of the new church, ranging from local contractors to congregation members donating their time. “People really stepped up and helped,” he said. The congregation has been planning for years to build a new building at the site of the school. Beardsley said the church bought the land where the church is now located in the 1980s, and helped finance the construction of the new building through the sale of its previous church, located at the intersection of 4th Avenue and 6th Street. That building now houses Abundant Life Ministries, a Foursquare Gospel Church. Beardsley said having the church next to the school makes a lot of sense. It will be easier for students to practice programs that will be performed in the church, for example they can just walk across the campus and be in The church. It will also make functions simpler and less expensive, he added, such as when fellowship luncheons are held after services in the church. The kitchen facilities in the school can be used to prepare food, which then can be carried to the church, eliminating the need to have another kitchen for church functions. “It makes life a lot simpler,” Beardsley added. Beardsley and Building Commi t t e e membe r Ro n Harmon said the amount of work put in by contractors and volunteers to construct the building was immense. “God has certainly blessed this effort,” Beardsley said. “Without the sale of the former building, the generosity of members and friends, Ron Harmon’s leadership, the help of local business folks and the support of the State and North Pacific Seventh-day Adventist Church organization, this project could not have happened.” Harmon said that many of the contractors worked like supervisors, allowing the volunteers to do much of the work. “They let us do what we could and stepped in and helped when needed,” Harmon said. A long list of people helped erect the new structure, including Clausen and Sons Inc. constructing the steel building, and Arnie and Dale Shulund being hired to begin completing the structure. Dan Wagner of Wagner Plumbing and Steve Faber of Bear Paw Electric also were crucial in the completion of the building, Beardsley said. Don Dixson consulted on lighting and donated time, and Tyler Cluthe, a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Shelby, donated the sound system and traveled to Havre to install it. Pastor Richy Thomas, who just arrived in Havre a few weeks ago and who will be introduced during the Opening Celebration Saturday, said the new church could also add to the numbers at its services and functions. The church holds 90 people for services, and is designed so it can be expanded, he said. He hopes to start filling that space. “We’re going on the saying, If you build it, they will come,’” thomas said.