Save this content for laterSave this content on your device for later, even while offline Sign in with FacebookSign in with your Facebook account Close

Church in Florence can no longer afford services

By: The Associated Press
August 19, 2013 Updated: August 19, 2013 at 11:58 am
0

FLORENCE — The First Baptist Church congregation in Florence, a fixture in the community for 115 years, turned over its deed to the Florence Arts Council on Sunday because it can no longer afford to stay open.

Pastor Tommy Newell said the congregation may be gone, but the building will continue to provide community support.

"We're running out of parishioners. We're running out of money, and inevitably, we would have to close the doors," Newell said.

Lynn Lemmon-Oliver, owner of the Blue Spruce Gallery, told the congregation their gift would be treasured and long remembered by everyone, according to the Canon City Daily Record (http://tinyurl.com/mtyh86l ). A plaque will be hung on the wall to honor the church's donation.

"This is an occasion for a celebration. The Florence Arts Council is overwhelmed with gratitude and excitement at this tremendous opportunity to give the arts in Florence more visibility," Lemmon-Oliver said at a ceremony that turned the church over to the community.

She said the former church will be used to hold historical debates, concerts, put on arts shows and provide classes for children and adults.

City Manager Mike Patterson thanked the parishioners for their gift.

"I know for a very long time this church has done good in the community and served the spiritual needs for its parishioners and folks out in the community. What you've done in turning this over to the art community in all the opportunities they will have to provide classes and do all the different things they've spoken about will continue that mission for many years to come, in a different way, but still a great mission that you used this church for," he said.

Florence Chamber of Commerce board member Larry Baker said the church has a long history.

"I wonder how many people have been in this church (since it was built more than 100 years ago). These people came to worship. They came to sit and feel the comfort and the safety, and wanting to be with friends. I'm hoping that would continue because that is actually what we do with our arts council. As we move forward to a new life, I think the very same reasons will be important to us," Baker said.

___

Information from: Canon City Daily Record, http://www.canoncitydailyrecord.com/

Comment Policy
Register to the Colorado Springs Gazette
Incognito Mode Your browser is in Incognito mode

You vanished!

We welcome you to read all of our stories by signing into your account. If you don't have a subscription, please subscribe today for daily award winning journalism.

Register to the Colorado Springs Gazette
Register to the Colorado Springs Gazette
Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

It appears that you value local journalism. Thank you.

Subscribe today for unlimited digital access with 50% fewer ads for a faster browsing experience.

Already a Subscriber? LOGIN HERE

Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

It appears that you value local journalism. Thank you.

Subscribe today for unlimited digital access with 50% fewer ads for a faster browsing experience.

Subscribe to the Colorado Springs Gazette

Some news is free.
Exceptional journalism takes time, effort and your support.

Already a Subscriber? LOGIN HERE

articles remaining
×
Thank you for your interest in local journalism.
Gain unlimited access, 50% fewer ads and a faster browsing experience.