BAYTOWN, Texas — “My heart… it breaks a little," says Pastor Raphael Montgomery, looking into his Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church in Baytown. In late December, the roof collapsed on the church he's been coming to his entire life.
He's been the church's pastor the last 11 years and was baptized here when he was six years old.
“Memories went through my mind. Tears started to flow down my face because it was just heartbreaking to see your home in tatters, in ruins."
The insurance company is still investigating why this happened.
Still, his faith remains devout.
“From every mess comes a miracle.”
A miracle that no one was hurt.
The collapse happened on Tuesday, December 28.
Except for Sundays, Pastor Montgomery gives all of his employees the entire month of December off.
If this happened in any other month, he says, someone probably would have been inside.
“To think that someone could have been hurt or someone could have been killed is just a horrifying thought, so I'm eternally grateful and I thank God daily for the reality that all of our members are safe and well."
The collapse comes as the church is celebrating its 90th anniversary.
“The church really is not the building. It’s the people who come together inside the building.”
Although what’s here now will have to be leveled, Pastor Montgomery sees this chance to rebuild from the ground-up as a new beginning.
“We’re grateful that God has given us this opportunity to give Calvary what she needs – that she can run on in to the future – and be the best church that she can possibly be.”
Their motto going forward is "Rebuilding by Faith."
Now, the church is holding services at Memorial Baptist, also in Baytown. You can find information on their services or how you can help here.
Their mailing address is:
Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church
P.O. Box 2672
Baytown, TX 77522
The church can also be found on Facebook (Mount Calvary The Place) and YouTube (Mount Calvary Baptist Church).