THOMAS KERVIN PHOTO The longest woman to attend the church stands next to one of the project’s integral planners, Andy Faber.

Port Hardy Baptist Church’s new building finished entirely by volunteer labour

Courtenay Baptist Church raised $19,000 for an awning at the entrance of the building.

Churchgoers may be pleased to hear that Port Hardy Baptist Church opened their new building.

The church, which had volunteers who worked on this project for seven years, held a grand opening Nov. 10 with a dedication ceremony.

Roughly 100 Port Hardy residents were present, which included a welcome and opening prayer, slide shows of the building process, a ribbon-cutting and finally the dedication of the new church. A number of volunteers were recognized during the event, some of whom have been part of the process since day one.

The new church building is nearby Elk Drive, located at the end of Highland Drive, Port Hardy. The new building is next to the church’s prior building, which is over 20 years old.

Andy Faber, who has spent countless hours of planning and work on the building, made a presentation to Port Hardy believers. “The only way we can do this is through volunteer labor. And that’s quite an ambition,” Faber said during the opening ceremony. He also mentioned the amount of effort required to find volunteers qualified to work on the building, such as engineers, locksmiths, and a construction foreman.

During construction, the Port Hardy volunteers were looking to build the awning at the entrance of the building, but the church needed extra funds to do so. As a gesture of partnership, a pastor at the Courtenay Baptist Church mentioned that he asked for donations from residents at his church for the awning, which resulted in $19,000 in funds.

The interim pastor, Peter Rabey, leads the church currently and also was master of ceremonies at the grand opening. He welcomed not only locals but believers who travelled as far as Ontario to come to the grand opening.

Port Hardy Bulldozing, one of many companies who aided the church, donated work and offered discounts on their services. Another organization, Port Hardy Lion’s Club, also donated equipment for the sound system.

Eric Penner, one of the men recognized for their extensive efforts and volunteer labour, was responsible for installing cabinetry throughout the new building. Another man, Don Kreller, spent hours of construction work finishing the building, especially in drywalling and taping.

The concrete laid outside the building was also given by Port McNeill Enterprises, having donated half of the concrete at the front entrance, stated the church’s brochure.

Courtenay Baptist Church, Campbell River Baptists Church, and Port McNeill Baptist Church travelled to Port Hardy to also provide construction labour work for the project.

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THOMAS KERVIN PHOTO Andy Faber talks about the project’s history, its volunteers, and how it was completed in seven years.

THOMAS KERVIN PHOTO Singers dedicate a few songs to the hard-working volunteers who dedicated their time to the project.

Port Hardy Baptist Church photo The team had to bring in a crane to finish the building’s frames.

Port Hardy Baptist Church photo The volunteers install insulation to the building structure.

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