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Church parsonage groundbreaking held Sunday

Jun. 24, 2013 @ 09:37 AM

BARBOURSVILLE -- For years to come, the pastor at Steele Memorial United Methodist Church will have a home that any member can visit.

The church broke ground Sunday on a new handicapped accessible parsonage, located at 1127 McClung Ave. in Barboursville.

"Our church has grown so much, and we've had two additions, but the parsonage we've just been maintaining," said Sandy Rupert, chairwoman of the church's administrative council.

Meeting the most recent accessibility codes for United Methodist Church, which includes access from the outside as well as an accessible downstairs bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and laundry room, the new home will open up the type of ministry the church can provide, said the Rev. John Sauvage, pastor at Steele Memorial. "That's why we're excited about this," he said.

It's about a $400,000 project, said Sauvage, who will live there with his wife, Jan. The church looked at other homes in the area, but to bring them up to code was costly as well, he said. He said the church is blessed that it's been so successful at paying down the mortgage of other recent projects to tackle this one.

It's an investment in the church, the community and the church's witness to the grace of God, said Greg Hayes, Western District Superintendent, who attended the event.

Paul Turman Jr., a church member, will volunteer as contractor on the project.

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