When Bel Air Presbyterian Church announced that it would close its doors, Rev. Eric Taylor saw a window of opportunity open. After months of prayer and hard work, the Rev. Taylor is in the process of acquiring the land for a new church to be established, Emmanuel Faith Tabernacle.
Eric Taylor hopes to purchase the old Belair Presbyterian Church for the new church he is establishing.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
"We have been able to do a lot of good things in the community and want to continue to work in this particular community because there are a lot of things still left undone," the Rev. Taylor said. "Even though North Bel Air Road has three churches on it, there is still enough work for everybody to do."
The Rev. Taylor is seeking to raise $1 million to purchase the land at 779 North Belair Road for the church and to build a community center on the property. The congregation has CDs called Intimacy on sale at area music stores for $10. An account has been established at Sun Trust Bank for donations.
"I think that with the crises like Sept. 11 there are a lot of people asking 'Is God still favoring America?' The reason I am asking the public to get involved with us is because if they see how God can take a small church, a multicultural church ... and see how God helps us, it will reassure them that even though we were bombed, God is still blessing those who are doing the right thing."
This is one of the first churches to spring out of the African-American denomination in the Augusta area recently.
"Most African-American churches have been here for over 100 years. This will be one of the first (branches) in the new millennium. Fifty years from now people will be able to see how God moved through this whole process," the Rev. Taylor said.
As part of the church's ministries, the Rev. Taylor plans to have programs for children and senior citizens.
"As an educator, one of the things that I think a lot of kids need is an after school tutorial program," said the Rev. Taylor, who was recently named assistant principal of Westside High School in Richmond County. "There are a lot of retired teachers in this community that have already said that would like to volunteer and help the kids after school. I think it would be an ideal location for those who would like to help these students ... particularly in math."
The Rev. Taylor will also be the host of a new 30-minute TV program beginning tomorrow on Channel 66 that will focus on biblical teaching.
"(On the show) we sit down and explain a lot of things that people have an interest in. What we do on the television program is go scripture by scripture, and break it down so that even children can understand it and get a better grasp of it," the Rev. Taylor said."
The show will be on Thursdays at 8 p.m. and the Rev. Taylor hopes to expand to two shows a week in September.
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