|Source: Baptist Press|
On January 26, the original home of the Alabama Baptist Convention, located on the campus of Judson College in Marion, began a 71-mile trip to its new home.
The house, a 200-year-old little white building on the historic Baptist women’s college, was a popular hangout spot for students. However, with the impending sale of the campus, the building risked being in peril.
Initially the college tried to partner with several local partners to keep the building in Marion, however after repeated unsuccessful attempts they were able to find a congregation that would be willing to house the building on its property.
Bethsaida Baptist Church in Furman, Alabama had a congregation that would serve as a custodian for the historic building.
The church voted to take ownership of the building from Judson, let it rest on land owned by the church and to take over any restoration and maintenance in the future. Judson’s board of trustees also saw the move as a good solution and affirmed the move.
“Our friends from Bethsaida Baptist Church are such a blessing and answer to prayers,” said Rash Jennifer, head of the Alabama Baptist Journal. “We wanted to find a way for the building to be preserved, and God definitely made it all happen.”
The building will now become a part of the Furman National Historic District and featured on tours, including an annual lighted spring pilgrimage tour in partnership with the Wilcox Historical Society’s Tour of Homes. Preliminary estimates from Furman town officials hope that the home will increase traffic in the downtown areas supporting local business.
Pastor Don Bell of Bethsaida Baptist Church said, “We feel very honored to get this done and that we were considered to do it. We have a great home for it, and we’re excited to have it as part of our downtown restoration effort.”
The building “is coming to a very good home,” he added and hopes that visitors will be attracted not just to the history of the building but also the light of Christ that it witnesses.
Source: Baptist Press