ministry seeks to breathe new life into church building and community | Local News
Jason Koon Screenwriter
The building that once housed the Grandview Baptist Church at the corner of NC 126 and Frank Whisnant Road has been virtually empty for nearly five years, but that changed on Sunday, April 17.
On Easter Sunday, “Honoring God Ministries” held its inaugural Sunday morning service in the building at 2492 NC 126 in Morganton. According to Reverend B. Douglas Cuthbertson, while the ministry has been in existence for more than a decade, Sunday morning services are one of the major focal points of its new direction.
“We are planning two main things, Sunday service and Bible study,” Cuthbertson said. “Prayer is always a key for us, but we’ll hang our hats on those two big things.”
Cuthbertson said simplicity will be a hallmark of everything Honoring God Ministries does in its new building.
“It’s going to be a simple format; we try to stay away from most traditions,” he said. “We want to make him worshipful and what I mean by that is that all the senses are directed towards God.”
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Cuthbertson said services typically last about an hour and consist of singing, prayers, scripture readings and a 20-minute message. He said the focus will always be on giving his congregation an encouraging word that they can take with them.
“The focus is on the word of God, that’s the main thing,” he said. “We don’t want to talk about emotion, that’s fine, emotion is OK, but we don’t want the message to get lost, so the focus is on empowering people through the word.”
Cuthbertson started Honoring God Ministries when he returned to Morganton in 2009. During the COVID-related closures of 2020, he started “The Word of God Telephone Prayer Line” as a way to serve people virtually who could not attend. church services, and the prayer line is still going strong.
“I am proud to say that we are 768 days; we are heading towards 800 days of uninterrupted prayer every day at noon,” he said.
In addition to the prayer line, Cuthbertson and her brother hosted Friday Night Fire in her backyard. Friday Night Fire is its way of reaching young people with a casual time around a campfire and other activities that appeal to a younger demographic.
“It happened during the pandemic when they weren’t playing football,” he said. “We really try to reach young people. We want it to be more than just a slogan.
Cuthbertson said Friday Night Fire gave him and the students who attended a chance to get creative and try new things, from dance contests and basketball tournaments to monthly presentations. of black history. Renting the new building gives him the opportunity to bring together everything the ministry has done under one roof, he said, calling it an opportunity he couldn’t pass up.
He is currently using the building under a one-year lease. The building has been owned by Nebo Crossing Church in Marion since Grandview was unable to continue making payments in 2017. Cuthbertson isn’t sure he’ll be able to stay there long-term, but he’s pledged to make the most of it. opportunities given to him.
“I don’t know if we will ever own this building. I can’t say that because I don’t know, but what I do know is that we’re going to seize the opportunity,” he said.
The Reverend John Whisnant, pastor of the former Grandview Baptist Church, said he was happy to see the building being used again.
Rather than disband when they lost the building in 2017, Grandview regrouped, changing its name to “New Perspective Community Church” and meeting at WCIS radio station less than a mile west. of the building on NC 126. Whisnant said he and Cuthbertson had previously discussed how the two neighboring congregations could work together in the future.
“I spoke to him on Saturday and told him I’m very glad someone is using the building,” Whisnant said. “I know Doug very well and he tries to do good things for the community and we are looking at doing a few things together. We look forward to working with them.
Honoring God Ministries meets for worship every Sunday from 9-10 a.m. and for Bible study every Tuesday at 6:45 p.m. Honoring God Ministries meets at 2942 NC 126 in Morganton.