LYNN HAVEN, Fla. (WMBB) — More than two years after Hurricane Michael, the First Baptist Church of Lynn Haven was finally able to welcome back their congregation in a new sanctuary on Sunday.
Members said the journey was long and emotional, but it helped them grown in their faith as they witnessed complete strangers lend a helping hand to our community.
Leaders of the First Baptist Church said they’re grateful to be able to giver their members some normalcy once again.
Multiple buildings were destroyed in the massive storm, but the devastation didn’t stop members from worshipping.
“As we said then, the building is not the church, the people are the church,” said church member, Larry Headrick.
The first few Sundays after Hurricane Michael, members gathered in the parking lot to hold church. They were determined to still have a service.
“We set up a sound system, we had to set up chairs, our congregation came together cause they wanted to do this,” Headrick said. “And so we praised the Lord the Sunday after the hurricane.”
Despite the destruction of the church and almost the entire community, Terry Bryant said the aftermath inspired him and helped him grow in his faith.
“Even with everything destroyed, the goodness that comes through,” Bryant said. “It was heartwarming I mean I can’t say enough about it. It just filled my heart. You can’t imagine how good it feels when you see people helping each other. You know, total strangers, it just really lifts you up.”
The church’s recovery isn’t quite over yet. They still need to rebuild their fellowship hall and educational classrooms, but members said Sunday was a special day for the congregation.