Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Foster's Chapel Methodist Church

This is a picture of Foster's Chapel Methodist Church. It is a new old church nestled in the hills of Robertson County, Kentucky. The significance of the church is not the structure or the beautiful woodworking within; nay, it is the story of theresilience of its members.

On May 15, 2009, miles away from a water mainline, let alone a volunteer fire department, nearby residents stood in anguish and watched their beloved 141 year old church burn to the ground. Members of the Case and Insko families have been parishioners of Foster's Chapel since it's original founding in 1868. The final resting place for those earliest families surrounds the building like a soft warm blanket.

There was but $65,000 worth of insurance protecting the building that burned, and anyone familiar with church construction knows that is not enough for most to consider rebuilding. Any other church would embark on a building program where parishioners commit to tithe greater than their normal capacity over a long period of time. These parishioners did something different. They built the church themselves.

Using the insurance money for materials, parishioners and local trades persons donated all the labor, including but not limited to plumbers, electricians, carpenters, drywall technicians and painters. They managed to get pews donated from a church in Lexington, song books donated from a church in Tennessee and hardwood floors and curtains donated from local merchants. An anonymous donation even came in for $10,000.

Services were held in private homes until it reopened its doors in the July, 2010. The white framed church once again keeps watch over its parishioners sleeping on the hillside, shaded by the hickory trees and tall oaks. It once again holds Sunday School at 9:00 on Sunday mornings followed by church services at 10:30. The sign out front says, "Everyone Welcome."

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