The Light at Joplin Church begins their building facelift project as they prepare to reopen

While the coronavirus put a lot of things on hold for people, Pastor Grindle says this extra time is what allowed them to move forward with the project.

JOPLIN, Mo, – Members of the Light at Joplin Church will tell you it’s their congregation that makes their church beautiful, but after putting off years of renovations a little elbow grease doesn’t hurt either.

“Our space is not the most important thing, really the most important thing is community and what we’re doing in our community. So we just thought as a way to invite people back to a hospitable space was to upgrade our carpet area, our sanctuary and our lobby” said Executive Pastor, Stephen Grindle.

They began tearing up the carpet in the sanctuary to start over with a concrete look. And new paint and touch ups to the lobby for the short term goals of the project along with new furniture and decorations.

“Eventually we’re going to remodel our children’s area that will be our children’s wing that will accommodate a lot more kids” added Pastor Grindle.

While the coronavirus put a lot of things on hold for people, Pastor Grindle says this extra time is what allowed them to move forward with the project.

“It gave us the extra space where were not meeting in the building to actually make these repairs, where this would have been put off a couple more years if we didn’t have the space. So it’s been a blessing in disguise.”

For Jana Smith, a church member, the rebuild was an exciting way to get the church back together.

“It’s an honor to be able to come and do something, we share the vision with Andrew and Stephen to be a Light onto Joplin. We’ve lived here 16 years and after a terrible thing like the tornado and a terrible thing like the coronavirus, to be able to come together and be constructive and do something positive and we feel this is a really positive thing to come forward and give a relaunch, a refocus to what we want to do in the community.”

The congregation will work every Saturday to improve the church until they open their doors again to the public.

“We’re just going to build momentum from here” added Pastor Grindle.

They plan on relaunching in June.

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