First Baptist Church of Ludowici recently had a homecoming-and-debt-retirement ceremony to celebrate paying off the note on the building.
Pastor Eric Rentz told the congregation and visitors that thanks had to go out to Don Kicklighter, Otis Chandler, Hendrix Hauling, the Johnson City brick masons, Campers on a Mission, First Baptist Church of Barnwell, the Georgia Baptist Builders, the building committee and everyone who supported the church.
The highlight of the day was when Rentz unveiled a marble block from the old building that had “Jesus Christ Himself Being The Chief Corner Stone” etched on it. He also had bricks from the old building placed around the block.
Rentz said the church was established Dec. 8, 1883 as Bethlehem Baptist Church. In 1947, the name was changed to First Baptist Church of Ludowici. On Oct. 1, 1950, the church relocated to Highway 84. The current facility opened Dec. 18, 2005, and was dedicated May 7, 2006.
Members of the building committee for constructing the church were Tommy Wingate III, Roy Smith, Lillian Simmons, Pam McDonald, Connie Howard, Claudine Chesser, David Garrason and Joe Murray.
“We are delighted to have all former members who came to celebrate this day with us, all visitors, and we certainly appreciate the faithful current members of First Baptist Church who helped make this day possible,” Rentz said.
Other church staff members include Andy Pusser, who is the pastor of education; Phil Swindell, the minister of music; and Eric Sizemore, the youth pastor.
The ceremony took place during the April 19 morning service.