Prayer Chapel Built in the Redwoods
On July 22 and 23, a dozen men and women constructed the new prayer chapel at Redwood camp meeting. The building was dedicated on Sabbath afternoon, July 24, as a crowd packed inside for prayer.
The chapel is located just a short walk from Pepperwood Pavilion, the cafeteria and the ABC. “I am thrilled that it is in the center of the campus, so everybody will know that prayer is an important feature of the Northern California Conference camp meeting,” said Naomi Parson, NCC prayer ministries coordinator.
Around three years ago, a tree fell and demolished the old prayer chapel, a small and weather-beaten structure. NCC administrators and Redwood camp meeting directors discussed ideas for a new chapel. Due to frequent heavy flooding in the area and local zoning laws, they were considering some sort of portable chapel.
At an ASI convention, Ed Fargusson, former NCC assistant to the president, learned about Maranatha Volunteers International’s One-Day Church. He thought it would be the ideal prayer chapel for the campground. The 20- by 35-foot structure could withstand flooding since everything but the frame and roof could be removed between camp meeting sessions, and its presence would promote Maranatha’s work around the world.
Maranatha’s One-Day Church was designed for congregations in the mission field who need a quick, affordable church building. The One-Day Church kit, consisting of the frame and roof, can be assembled in only one day, as Redwood volunteers proved on July 22.
“It was amazingly easy,” said Jerry Rowan from Lincoln, Calif., who was one of the building crew.
“It’s designed so volunteers can walk in and do it,” said Judy Zachrison, from Boring, Ore., who worked as a “go-fer” during construction.
The Redwood chapel has wooden side panels, designed by Dan Brown, a camp meeting associate director. Constructed and painted ahead of time by volunteers, the sides were added to the prayer chapel on July 23, along with double-paned windows. (In the mission field, local Adventist congregations construct the sides for their churches out of available materials, such as cinderblock or bamboo.)
Future plans for the Redwood chapel include carpet, ceiling fans, electricity and stained glass windows. Parson hopes to see it used for prayer seminars, anointings, special prayer sessions, and as a quiet place for private prayer.
Fargusson hopes that the new and bigger Redwood chapel will inspire people to focus more on prayer. “Who knows?” he said, as he considered the possibilities for the chapel. “Maybe it will be too small.”