On Friday, December 10th, a tornado devastated the town of Mayfield, Kentucky. The twister destroyed homes, demolished vehicles, and even collapsed a candle factory. Additionally, the storm laid waste to several churches on its way through Mayfield. One congregation is looking at the rubble of their house of worship and seeing a symbol of hope. The Mayfield, Kentucky church’s altar, which also serves as its communion table, made it through the storm unscathed.
Earlier today, Dr. Milton West, the senior minister of the First Christian Church of Mayfield Kentucky appeared on The Today Show to talk about the aftermath of the tornado and what his congregation is doing to recover he also brought up the altar. About the altar, he said, “It’s the center of our worship experience. It survived along with a cross that sits on it.”
Additionally, the First Christian Church of Mayfield Kentucky posted about the still-intact altar on Facebook. “The table of the Lord is intact,” they wrote alongside some photos of the altar and the rubble surrounding it.
It’s not hard to see how the altar standing in the now-destroyed church is giving Mayfield, Kentucky residents hope. Most of the town lays in ruins. Several members of the congregation lost their homes. Additionally, many people from Mayfield died in the tornado. However, there’s still a symbol of their faith standing strong amid the destruction like a beacon or a subtle message from the Man Upstairs.
Like the Altar, This Mayfield, Kentucky Congregation Is Still Standing
Just two days after the tornado smashed through Kentucky, the congregation gathered in the church parking lot, in view of the altar, for a prayer service.
Dr. West has high hopes for his congregation. “I think they’re beginning to cope with the reality of what has happened, and they’re certainly grieving and sad over the loss,” West said. He added that the church is doing all it can to keep spirits high in Mayfield.
As a leader, Dr. West is hoping to get his congregation into the correct headspace moving forward. Like his church’s altar, the Kentucky minister hopes to keep his people standing tall in their faith amid the devastation. In doing so, they too can become a beacon of hope.
Dr. West told Today what he said to his congregation. “There are a lot of people out there who would say that this is a sign from God that something is wrong. We do not embrace that notion at all. Our faith is positive, and God is never the author of bad things in people’s lives.”
Dr. West is also trying to see the positive in the situation. He hopes to see his community put all of their political, theological, and personal views aside and pull together. “Those differences don’t matter when you’re trying to rebuild your lives.”