Members of the congregation hold a ceremonial ground breaking ceremony on April 8.
Westport The Westport Bible Church broke ground on Easter Sunday, April 8, beginning construction on an addition to the church’s rectory.
The church will undergo a 2,300-square-foot addition to the current rectory, which Pastor Dick Hoff said will allow his large congregation to come together as a family for one service every Sunday.
“When I began as pastor here, we had a congregation of 12,” Hoff said. “Over the years. our congregation has grown to over 100.”
Due to the large size of his congregation and the limited space in the current rectory, Hoff said Sunday service has had to be broken up into two services.
“We’re looking forward to having one service for everyone as a family because there’s a lot of people who don’t get to see each other with the broken up services,” Hoff said. “A church isn’t a building; it’s the congregation, and that’s why we want everyone together.”
Construction to the rectory will include two additions being built off the north and the east side of the building. Hoff said the church hopes construction will be completed by the fall. During construction, the congregation will continue to meet at the church.
“We’ve designed the construction plans to not interrupt our services,” Hoff said.
When the addition is complete, the church will tear down the existing walls and open it up for a larger group area.
The addition will also expand the basement to have more room to construct three offices and a larger gathering area to hold youth group meetings and dinner gatherings.
Church officials have collected donations from parishioners over the past four years for the building project.
“We’re not going into debt for this,” Hoff said. “We have not had a mortgage since I started here, and we don’t plan on getting one for this project. We want to pay this project off as we go.”
Westport Bible Church Trustee John Anderson said he views the expansion of his church as an uplifting sentiment when compared to the downsizing of other congregations.
“We’re very proud of what we’re doing here and hope it will allow the congregation to become stronger,” Anderson said.