Church Members Raise Millions for Addition

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MUNCY -- A church in the Susquehanna Valley has reason to be excited about the future. The church in Muncy broke ground this past weekend to begin a $3 million expansion project. The increased space is to keep up with a growing congregation.

"It's a wonderful space to do that, but it really is too small for what we're trying to do,” said Pastor Arlene Beechert.

She said the pews at the First United Methodist Church fill up with members on Sundays for service.

"The second service is often pretty full,” said Pastor Beechert.

"We've outgrown it and it's just extremely exciting,” said Dennis Hammond from Hughesville.

The pastor said some folks from Muncy call this "the big church on the hill." With construction just beginning, the building will soon be even bigger.

The pastor said this project is more than just adding on a couple of extra rooms. They plan to double the size of the church building.

“Raised in excess of $1 million in under four weeks, so, yes we were very pleased. You know you've got support when you do that,” said Jim Mothersbaugh from Muncy

All donations came for church members. The $3 million addition, called the Celebration Center, will include a new kitchen, basketball court, six classrooms, and a bigger gathering area.

“We're really anxious to see the dirt start flying and the building go up,” said Mothersbaugh.

While some churches are seeing declining membership, this First United Methodist Church has seen growth and Pastor Beechert hopes a modern addition will bring even more people to faith.

"We are trying to hear what it is that people need now,” said Pastor Beechert.

The church plans to have the project completed by April of next year.