Volunteers renovate church for Miracle DayBy Alessandra Delrose | 06/24/2014 5:41pm
People from all over the state of Alabama, including University of Alabama students, gathered at First Christian Church for the biennial Miracle Day on Saturday.
Pastor Tom Goebel said Miracle Day began in 2000.
“[Our] denomination, The Disciples of Christ, developed an idea to bring all the churches together for a day of service,” Goebel said. “So every two years a church is chosen, and we all gather and reach out a helping hand.”
The premise of Miracle Day is congregations working together in service to help out a church in need. Work and renovations that could take years are completed during the day.
“A church gets selected for various reasons through a committee, and then that church is blessed with the miracle of Miracle Day,” he said.
This year First Christian Church was selected, and Goebel said that it couldn’t have been at a better time.
“Two years ago, we had this terrible tornado come through and our members went out and served the community during this tough time in Tuscaloosa,” he said. “We had a bit of what I would like to call compassion fatigue, where our members went out and helped rebuild and create for the community.”
Goebel said he considers this Miracle Day a reward for the work the members of First Christian Church have put into the community over the past two years.
“We were selected, and now this is an opportunity for the community of churches to come help serve us, to help us keep up with the things that we weren’t able to do because we were so busy helping the community build,” Goebel said.
Throughout the day, volunteers undertook projects like painting the sanctuary and adding a patio and a meditation garden.
“It’s so important for churches to update themselves, because we want people to notice us,” Goebel said. “They may not have to come worship here, but we have a message. The message is that we are here, we are here to stay, we have a purpose, we have a reason and we care about ourselves and the Lord.”
University of Alabama students took Miracle Day as an opportunity to not only lend a helping hand but also to give back to their church.
“Today we are painting the inside of the Disciple House,” Flynn Woods, a junior majoring in mechanical engineering, said. “The goal is to leave the place looking better than we found it.”
The Disciple House is a building at First Christian Church that houses up to five students from the University. Woods said that he wants to keep the place up and do what he can for future students who may be living at the Disciple House.
“We get a deal on living here, and we want to do whatever we can do to give back to First Christian,” Tabitha Green, a junior majoring in restaurant, hotels and meetings management, said. “It’s our chance to give something back for all they do for us students.”
(See also "Volunteers building dream playground for community")