A 20-year-old church vision is beginning to come to life thanks to a group of volunteers. Haynes Flat Baptist Church in Speedwell, Tenn., is getting a new building along TN 63. This week, 150 volunteers from a group called the Mobile Baptist Builders began work on the church.
Though the group is based out of Alabama, people from all over the nation assist them in their work. At the work site, there were volunteers from 18 states including Illinois, Louisiana, Missouri, Arizona and California.
“It’s been a real humbling experience,” said Jason Poe, pastor of Haynes Flat Baptist Church. “I credit the Lord for everything.”
Burben Sullins, the group coordinator, said the group has performed 55 projects since the group was established.
“God called me to do this about 33 years ago,” said Sullins. “He called me to build his house.”
By the end of the week, the group plans to have the roof on and the windows and doors in. They also plan on having the church wired before the end of the week.
Poe said the church bought the property for the new location 20 years ago. The church started a building fund to put money back for a new church.
When Poe became pastor, he said he realized one of the biggest issues that kept things from getting started was an architect. He said an architect usually takes 8 to 10 percent of what the building is worth as payment, which would leave a big hole in the building fund.
Poe said the church started a five year plan to find an architect.
A big break for the church came in the form of Ray Grubb, a retired man who was saved at Haynes Flat in years past.
“The Lord just sent him to us at the perfect time with the perfect opportunity,” said Poe.
Poe and Sullins said Grubb is the individual that brought the two together. He worked with the group on a project in previous years.
Grubb called an architect from North Carolina he worked with in the past and the architect drew the plans for the church for free.
“They are saving us hundreds of thousands of dollars in labor, along with the architect that didn’t charge us anything,” said Poe. “Every step of the way the Lord has shown he is in it.”
Poe said the volunteers pay their own way to come and help with the church. Some had to pay for hotels because of the lack of space to stay.
“It’s been a community effort the whole way,” said Poe. Powell Valley Middle School allows the church to use their lunchroom for eating. Each night after dinner, the group holds church services.
“It’s like we’ve known each other all of our life,” said Poe. “We are part of a big family, the family of Christ.”
In two weeks, 100 more volunteers will be coming to assist the church with the project.
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-248-1010, ext. 208, email@example.com