Three days after a fire destroyed the facilities at New Friendship Baptist Church, Pollock, Louisiana, more than 200 faithful members and guests gathered under a tent to praise God despite their loss.
Pastor Lloyd Whitman said while he and his congregation are devastated over the fire that burned down the worship center, fellowship hall and education building on Feb. 16, the church has a bright future in Christ. Whitman said the church is looking forward to rebuilding on the grounds.
“We are not quitting,” Whitman told the Baptist Message. “Quitters never win, and winners never quit. We are going forward.”
Outpouring of support
The church will continue to meet under the Louisiana Baptist Convention-owned tent for several more weeks. After that time, they could relocate temporarily for worship to one of the many churches that have offered their facilities, Whitman said.
He noted his thanks for the support shown from fellow Louisiana Baptist and other denominational churches.
“There has been a tremendous outpouring of love for our church,” Whitman said. “I have always known we are together as churches but the love so many people have shown us is uplifting.
“The community showed up for the service, along with the many texts, emails, calls and money and other resources we have received,” he noted. “It has just been wonderful not just for me as a pastor but for my people.”
An investigation into the fire continues and the cause is unknown, Whitman said.
EDITOR’S NOTE — This story was written by Brian Blackwell and originally published by Louisiana Baptist Message.