Church moves 44 miles to host new congregation

Sara  Sneath By Sara Sneath

Sept. 17, 2015 at 11:24 p.m.
Updated Sept. 18, 2015 at 1 a.m.

A caravan of vehicles traveling up U.S. Highway 59 are led by the Victoria County sheriff's deputies.

A caravan of vehicles traveling up U.S. Highway 59 are led by the Victoria County sheriff's deputies.   Frank Tilley for The Victoria Advocate

A Mission Valley congregation has taken the adage of "bringing church to the people" literally.

The congregation hired Clegg Services LTD to haul a church from Placedo about 44 miles to Mission Valley. The church was cut into two pieces for the move, said the company's managing partner John Clegg. The steeple was also removed and transported separately.

The largest portion of the church, a 30-by-70-foot chunk, was transported on an 18-wheeler Thursday.

The move, which backed up traffic along U.S. Highway 87, U.S. Highway 59 and Loop 463, took about four hours.

Moving the old church to Mission Valley was quicker than building one, said Tommy Matusek, the chairman of the building committee for Christ the King Lutheran Church Missouri Synod.

The building became available when an aging Placedo congregation stopped using it. Before it was a church, the building was used as an Army barracks, Matusek said.

The Mission Valley congregation of about 40 to 45 people formed two years ago when they concluded that being together was the best possible way to live out their Christian calling.

The group's new digs will be on Farm-to-Market 237, about one mile from Farm-to-Market 236.

Loading the largest chunk of the church onto the truck took about a month. But on moving day, the 18-wheeler escorted by two Victoria County Sheriff's Office deputies navigated around the city without a problem.

As the truck pulled into the empty lot in Mission Valley, Matusek jokingly yelled, "Don't kill my grass."

The church hopes to open its doors in November. But while the congregation recognizes the church building is "God's house," the group believes the church is really people.

"It is the sum of its parts, each one being a part of the Body of Christ," Matusek said.


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