After 10 years, Soldotna church gets its steeple

Taking it to the top

Posted: Wednesday, August 07, 2002

"Now it looks like a church," said a bystander watching as a 30-foot steeple was raised by a crane to the top of the College Heights Baptist Church on Kalifornsky Beach Road in Soldotna Tuesday.

Built in 1992, the church has never had a steeple.

"The congregation always wanted one," said Kemmer Sorrell, one of the church members and one of about a dozen church volunteers who helped erect the steeple.

"I found a company in Henderson, Texas, that built it for us and one of our members went down there and picked it up."

A group of a dozen men from the Prairie Creek Baptist Church in Plano, Texas, then traveled to Soldotna to help raise the fiberglass steeple.

People from the same Texas church helped build the College Heights church in 1992 and came again in 1997 to help build the adjacent fellowship hall.

"We're anything but construction people," said Bob Ross, pastor of the Plano church. "We're just a bunch of guys who build.

"We look at this as an introduction to missionary work for our church. We work real hard all day long, and then, when the work day is done, we fish."

Ross said his crew is housed by families of the 300-member Soldotna church, who also make breakfast for the men before they head to the work site.

Other work being done includes painting the outside and several inside rooms of the church, making some structural repairs to the building and doing some landscaping.

And the fishing?

"It's been real good," Ross said. "We limited out on halibut the one day we went out on the inlet, and we've done pretty well with salmon."

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