Primera Iglesia Bautista opens its doors to Ryan Chapel, while i - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Primera Iglesia Bautista opens its doors to Ryan Chapel, while it rebuilds from fire

Ryan Chapel United Methodist Church now hold Sunday worship services at 9 AM. Ryan Chapel United Methodist Church now hold Sunday worship services at 9 AM.
Primera Iglesia Bautista is located across the street from Ryan Chapel. Primera Iglesia Bautista is located across the street from Ryan Chapel.
Women's Sunday school meets at 10:30 instead of normal 9:45 AM. Women's Sunday school meets at 10:30 instead of normal 9:45 AM.
Youth Sunday school meets at 10:30 instead of normal 9:45 AM. Youth Sunday school meets at 10:30 instead of normal 9:45 AM.
The men's Sunday school meets at 10:30 also instead of normal 9:45 AM. The men's Sunday school meets at 10:30 also instead of normal 9:45 AM.
BURKE, TX (KTRE) -

Since the disastrous fire destroyed Ryan Chapel United Methodist Church in Burke on May 3rd, its congregants have been displaced and saddened, but yet expecting to see another move from God.

It didn’t take the members to get an answer to their prayers.  Two weeks after the fire, they began having service at their temporary place of worship: Primera Iglesia Bautista, which is literally across the street.

 “They were gracious enough to offer their sanctuary for us to hold church.  They actually changed their service times so that we could meet," beamed Charles Weeks, Pastor of Ryan Chapel.

Normally Ryan Chapel would have Sunday morning worship at 9:30 AM.  However, Primera’s Pastor Pedro Aviles and his congregation agreed to push back their Sunday school and morning worship times to accommodate their neighbors in need.  Now, Ryan Chapel worships at 9:00 AM.--30 minutes earlier.

"We thought about asking them to come over here, but eventually the pastor read our minds,” said Baldemar Gaitan, Worship Leader at Primera.

“They were gracious enough to offer their sanctuary for us to hold church.  They actually changed their service times so that we could meet," Weeks said. 

            So, by 10 AM each Sunday, Ryan Chapel will have said its benediction, and Iglesia Bautista members would begin arriving on chair grounds and in the fellowship hall for Sunday school.

Gaitan added, "The transition, it went very well.  We actually got to meet them.  When we're coming in, they're coming out.  So, we stay and talk and say, 'Hi.'"

"It's been a wonderful thing for us.  And they're fantastic people," Pastor Weeks said. 

            So that May fire has welded two churches together in spirit and in fellowship.  Meanwhile, meanwhile, the church is moving forward with its rebuilding.

            Architectural plans of the proposed new sanctuary should be ready in two weeks.


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