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July 30, 2014, 7:20 pm

Love Zion welcomes long-awaited sanctuary

On Mother’s Day, a group gathered in front of the Love Zion Baptist Church located at 2521 North 23rd St., to watch Pastor Louis Cunningham cut a ribbon in front of the doors of the church’s new sanctuary. Church members were enthusiastic and emotional as they lined up to enter the new sanctuary at Love Zion Baptist Church.

Pastor Cunningham had a vision for Love Zion’s new sanctuary that is located directly below their previous sanctuary. According to Elaine West, the church’s secretary, the work on the new space began in 2006.

“This is something that Pastor Cunningham has been working towards for the past 20-plus years and we actually broke ground in 2006,” West said. “He’s been waiting for this day for so long and I’m just glad he is able to stand in this pulpit this morning.”

West believes the ribbon cutting and opening of the new sanctuary means a lot to the church members.

“We have members of this church who are still here from the start,” she said. “So for some of them, to be here from the beginning to now, to watch him actually cut that ribbon and unlock that door, it meant a lot to them.”

In honor of the new sanctuary, Love Zion Baptist will hold activities throughout the week. Dedication celebrations were scheduled from Wednesday through Sunday. On Saturday the church will hold a ministry at 10 a.m., followed by a women’s ministry meeting at 11 a.m., a crochet class at noon and an usher ministry meeting at 1 p.m.

There will be another dedication celebration on Sunday, May 20.

Love Zion Baptist Church’s history began with a meeting of 84 people, including Pastor Cunningham, in 1984 on the corner of 53rd and Wilton streets. With years of dreams of a new sanctuary, last Sunday the church was able to celebrate Mother’s Day in its new setting.