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Destroyed Bethesda church reopens

The Bethesda Presbyterian Church arises from the destruction wrought by a tornado in May 2010. Staff Photo by Jeff Whitten

Bethesda Presbyterian church has resumed services, according to Rachel Dancer, wife of Pastor Chris Dancer.

Although a little work on the building is yet to be done, services were held Sunday, July 3, for the first time since the building was destroyed in the May 2010 tornado.

Outside work on the historic church by Henson Construction Co. concluded in May, and members of the church then did trim, carpentry and electric work on the inside.

Rachel said that they hope to have a dedication service as soon as inside work concludes on the Bethesda church.

Henson is now working on Purdy Presbyterian Church, which was also destroyed by the same storms. Rachel said that this church will probably open in a couple of months.

They have finished  the framing and started on a roof, Rev. Dancer said.

Dancer is also the pastor at the Purdy Church.

They are also in the process of looking for windows, he said.

They haven’t yet started painting, electric or plumbing work on the Purdy church.

“We’ve had great support and  looking forward to getting back in there,” he said.

Not having a building has not stopped either church from conducting services.

Both started sharing the Purdy Community Center after the storms and later the Bethesda church moved  to Emmett and Lynn Hockaday’s home.

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