By Rebecca Jones, special to the News-Times
BEAUFORT — A new beginning sometimes comes from another beginning that ends.
That is how it was for Live Oak Grove Christian Church on Russells Creek Road in Beaufort. In 1844, the church was named Ware Creek Church.
The church building at that time was located about a mile north of the present location of 166 Russells Creek Road in an open, cultivated field. In 1885, the church name was changed to Live Oak Grove. Sometime between 1943 and the early 1950s, the church was moved to its current location.
Due to age and damages from several hurricanes, Live Oak Grove members started seriously discussing building a new church building sometime around the end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012. They had started a building fund several years before. They had a contractor come out and look at the current building to see if repairs/renovations would be the best way for them to go, and the outcome was not feasible nor cost effective. The building was becoming unsafe.
The planning began. In August 2013, the building plans were complete. They had been told about Autauga Carpenters for Christ, which have volunteers in many states that travel one time a year for 7-10 days to a specified location to help build church buildings or whatever is needed to help spread God’s Word. They shared with them the plans for a 5,000-square-foot building with two additional rooms upstairs.
With a budget of $150,000, the men told them they would build as much as they could in 9 days with as much money as they had. The church now has a new church building with Mr. Bill Pollock as pastor.
Now it was time for the old church to be taken down. After many prayers and discussions, they asked the Beaufort Fire Department if it was interested in holding trainings in the old church building and have a live burn. With all permits and inspections in place on April 24, the BFD held the live burn. North River and Mill Creek fire departments trained along with the Crystal Coast Fire Academy students. Beaufort EMS was on scene in the event of any injury. It was sad to see the old building go.
Ann Davis, a member, said, “As I watched the burning of the old Live Oak Grove Church today, so many feelings rushed over me. I thought of all the saints who have gone before us in that beautiful place. How God had met them where they were in this peaceful Russells Creek community. How God had taken care of them and gotten them through the throes of living and dying. How God had nurtured their children as they raised them in awe of God. How Jesus is truly in this place.
“I am reminded that God is not a building. He is omnipotent and omniscient. I am grateful for all of the forward-thinking people of this congregation and am humbled to be a part of this church family.”