The Norfolk and Norwich Christian community website

Zion leaders pledge to rebuild church

ZionFireSignLeaders at Mount Zion church in Norwich, which was wrecked by fire on Monday night, have pledged to rebuild and continue serving the community.

The Family Life Centre on Heartsease Lane was destroyed by the huge blaze, but the church and its members are already rising to the challenge, boosted by support from across the city’s Christian community and much further afield.

Like the giant cross which stands defiantly on the roof of the charred shell of the centre, the church will be back up and running at a different location within days, said Pastor Trevor Pimlott.

“The centre is like a lighthouse for the area. It is a key focal point for the entire community. As we come to terms with this terrible shock we must think of it as a positive new beginning,” he told the Eastern Daily Press.

“Since we originally opened, the church has expanded beyond what we ever imagined so we have got to design a new facility, bigger and better than before.

“This tragedy will turn into triumph as we continue to go forward as a church. A building can be destroyed but the spirit, heartbeat and purpose of the church cannot.”

Messages of support from the Norwich Christian community and across the world have been flooding into the Network Norwich website and Trevor has received offers of help from other local churches and their leaders and from as far afield as Australia and America.

Mount Zion are determined to carry on their community work and a concert by top Christian band Delirious, planned for the centre on March 9, will take place at a different venue if at all possible, pledged Wildlife youth club leader Jon Norman. Some 900 tickets have already been sold.

Details will be published on Network Norwich and the Wildlife website www.wildlife-youth.com
The Wildlife youth club, the biggest in the city catering for up to 170 youngsters every Friday night, will be up and running next week, March 3, with buses running from the Family Life Centre car park from 7pm.

“Wildlife will continue to move forward, build bigger and reach more young people than ever before,” said Jon. Let’s stand together at this time. Nothing is going to stop us.

The Family Life Centre was coming up to its tenth anniversary at Heartsease Lane after the £1.2m building was opened in 1996. It sees over 1000 people pass through its doors every week from toddlers to OAPs. The church celebrated its 40th anniversary last June.
By Keith Morris

Pictured is the Family Life Centre on fire (picture by EDP).


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