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Decatur church members excited about Grant Street, Austinville merger

Ministers with the churches say the merger was a financial and spiritual decision.

Posted: Jun 26, 2019 9:28 PM
Updated: Jun 26, 2019 9:43 PM

WAAY 31 got a look on Wednesday at how the merger is going between two Decatur churches.

Ministers with both Grant Street and Austinville Church of Christ say it wasn’t low memberships that caused them to come together. In fact, they say it was a financial and spiritual decision.

“I was born and probably the next week, I was in the nursery at 240 Grant Street. So, I literally was born and raised there,” said Kate Terry, a church member.

Grant Street Church of Christ is a place that has always been a part of her life.

 “We moved around Decatur a lot as I was growing up, and the one place that was my constant was the building there on Grant Street and the people that I worshipped with,” Terry said.

So, when Terry heard about the merger with Austinville Church of Christ, she was a little hesitant at first, but says she quickly changed her mind when she realized what it meant.

“We’ve got so many resources we can use together, instead of building a new building or fixing up the current building that we have, we can come to a place where everything is essentially ready,” she said.

They’ve got a few projects underway, like revamping some of the classrooms to make them more interactive for kids. The church said they felt this was the best way to spend their money.

 “Our elders decided, ‘Let’s come together, instead of paying a couple million dollars to build a building. Let’s give that money back to where we can serve people for God’s purposes,’” Cody Michael, an outreach minister, said.

Michael says it’s not that they’re trying to leave downtown or have a declining membership. It’s that they want to reach more people, something Terry believes the merger will do.

“We’ll be able to grow and have a building that, hopefully, can hold all of God’s blessings that are coming our way,” she said.

The two churches plan to have their first worship service together as “Decatur Church of Christ” on August 4th.

There still aren’t any set plans for the Grant Street building. Church officials say it could still be used by church members, or possibly become a place of worship for another congregation.

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