‘It’s just a miracle’: Volunteers rebuild Chatham church three years later


PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Va. – A tragic situation turned into a blessing for a local community. More than three years after a serious accident, a Chatham church is putting the pieces back together.

Tim Kyser has pastored Open Bible Baptist for 22 years. He said he knew the church was growing and needed a bigger sanctuary, but he never thought that was how it would be.

“For us it was a tragic thing, but God turned it around in a pretty remarkable way,” Kyser said.

In January 2019, a tractor-trailer drove into the church, taking away two-thirds of the building.

He says the first miracle started with a phone call.

A woman offered to donate $210,000 to the church for reconstruction. Kyser said she told him she had the money for a while and that was what God was leading her to do with it.

With the donation and insurance money combined, the church was ready to begin renovations. Kyser and the church community were ready to get started, but COVID delayed their plans.

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“COVID hit,” Kyser said. “He shut down all the contractors. Then the price of wood and labor skyrocketed.

Kyser said the church didn’t want to go into debt for the project, so they put the renovations on hold and started praying.

About a month later, Carpenters for Christ arrived.

Carpenters for Christ travel the East Coast building places of worship, their main goal being to transform already good men into better Christians, fathers and husbands.

“It really warms your heart and that’s what our mission is all about,” said Florida Chapter President Phil Duval. “We want to build the Kingdom of God.”

Duval is just one of 50 men volunteering his time. The organization is spending a week in Pittsylvania County, and work at Chatham Church is nearing completion.

“God gave us money, he gave us workers and he does everything,” Kyser added. “We never asked anyone for anything. It’s just a miracle and we’re just watching it happen.

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Carpenters for Christ will return to the church in October, according to Kyser. He said he trusted God to complete the job and he knew God would continue to answer their prayers.

Copyright 2022 by WSLS 10 – All rights reserved.

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