It’s a day that been more than a decade in the making, but Apostolic Revival Church now owns its building outright.
The church held a mortgage-burning ceremony on Sunday, having made the final payment on the $130,000 loan for its 5,000-square-foot meeting place.
“It was a great celebration yesterday knowing the building is paid off,” the Rev. Frank Crossin Jr., the church’s pastor, said Monday.
In honor of the special occasion, the Rev. Jerry Jones, general secretary of the United Pentecostal Church International, served as guest speaker.
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The congregation moved into its building at 11656 Illinois Route 143, just west of Highland, on Father’s Day 2005. Prior to that, the congregation met in the little building next to its current home. That building once served as a cheese shop.
“It was cold in the winter and warm in the summer,” said Crossin, who took over pastoral duties from Audrey Feigl, the church’s founding pastor, in 1998. “At times, we would cram 100 people in the main room.”
Much of the work on the new building was done by church members themselves.
“Our church has always enjoyed being around each other and conscious of helping those in need. No one is exempt from difficulty, so we’ve all been on both sides of helping and being helped by the congregation,” Crossin said.
The congregation had just 12 members — mostly single moms — when Crossin took over 17 years ago. “I was voted in by the congregation, 5 to 0. I tell people I had 100 percent of the vote,” Crossin joked.
There are now 140 people in the flock — and more growth is coming.
The church, which has a motto of “Building Strong Families,” has “lots of young families and many babies,” Crossin said.
“We believe as the family goes, so goes the community we live in, as well as our schools and churches,” he said.
The old cheese shop is now used by the church’s youth department, another new addition.
“As the church grew, we would add needed ministries,” Crossin said.
Growth has also included a children’s ministry and music department, and more is planned.
“We plan on beginning a new building program and saving towards adding a new sanctuary to the existing building that will seat 350 to 450 people,” Crossin said.
Luckily, there is room to expand. The church also owns a total of five acres after having recently purchased two acres across a side street.
“The new property we bought last month should be paid for next year,” Crossin said.
Worship Times & Bible Classes
Sunday: Bible classes are offered for ages 2 years old, all the way to the adult class and run from 11 to 11:50 a.m. At noon, all the classes return to the main auditorium for worship service.
Wednesday: After a couple worship songs, everyone goes to their respective Bible classes, which run from 7 to 8:15 p.m. Wednesday classes are also are for ages 2 and up.
For more information, go to archighland.org or facebook.com/apostolicrevivalchurch.