POMEROY — The Refuge Church will soon have a location of its own to call home, as the church prepares to move to Pomeroy from Cheshire.
Pastor Jordan Bradford and several others have been working on the new location after the church purchased the former G and J Auto Parts building on West Second Street.
Bradford explained the church had started a campaign last year with looking to build in the future. They recently found out they would need to move from the location they had been leasing for the past five years, which also housed the headquarters for Freedom For Appalachia. Learning they would need to move rather soon after, Bradford said they prayed and the Lord said they would have something for them.
Looking online Bradford said he saw the G and J building on a website but there was no realtor listed. Zooming in on the photo he could see the reality sign and made contact with the agency.
The church made an offer on the building which was contingent on financing, but learned there was another offer being considered as well, leading to concern that they may not get the space. They soon learned their offer had been accepted, but then the concern was the renovation budget. That work is being done by donors, with individuals both in and out of the church donating to the project as well.
Since finalizing the purchase on the building work has taken place to redo the exterior of the building which used to have large glass windows. With the old windows unable to be replaced, the decision was made to go with smaller windows and industrial tin on the exterior of the building. Work is also taking place on the inside which will include office space, as well as a sanctuary/great room area.
The location in Cheshire, which the church had been leasing, was a great location, according to Bradford, but was out of the way and not convenient for many people. The new location in Pomeroy’s downtown area will be more convenient.
The Refuge Church formed a couple years ago by individuals involved with the organization Freedom For Appalachia. The organization helps to work with at risk you in the community.
Bradford explained that the goal is to have the building be more of a center for the community rather than being like a a traditional church. Once work is completed there will be space available for people to rent for gatherings.
The plan is for the church to be community based, providing programs and opportunities for youth, seniors and others in the community once all of the renovation work is completed and they have settled in to the location. Potential programs could include after school programs, as well as life classes to help individuals, particularly teens and young adults, to learn skills that are needed in everyday life which they may not have learned previously.
Bradford explained that the church is non-denominational and that everything they do goes on the motto, “Loving God, Loving People, Serving the World.”
Along those lines, Bradford explained that the name of the church is representative of the church being a refuge for all people. Bradford added that when people first come to the church is is like they are coming home and nothing outside of that matters.
The first service at the new location is set for 7 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 10, with a Sunday service at 10:30 a.m. on the 11th.
Reach Sarah Hawley at [email protected]