On January 22, 2014, Haven Memorial UMC suffered water damage from a frozen water pipe. That damage plus a subsequent collision into the rear of the church resulted in Haven Memorial UMC needing a complete restoration of its facility from top to bottom. From January 26 until the end of May, the Haven Memorial congregation worshiped at the Cooper Recreation Center, named in honor of Rev. Alfred Cooper, a retired United Methodist pastor and member of Haven Memorial UMC. This opportunity gave Haven Memorial unprecedented access to the wider community in which they are located.
Haven returned to their building on June 1, 2014, for worship. However, because the company furnishing the church pews was experiencing a significant backlog because many churches sustained similar damage due to the harsh winter, that congregation worshipped without pews. Finally, the new pews were installed on July 24.
Haven Memorial UMC now has a new look and the members have a new attitude because they see how God has turned a disastrous event into a tremendous blessing.
On Sunday, August 3, Haven Memorial celebrated the restoration and return to its facility with their long-awaited "Family and Friends Day," which originally was planned for February 23. The weekend began with a picnic/block party at Cooper Recreation Center on Friday. The highlight of the weekend was worship on Sunday afternoon with Dr. Eddie Hunter and the Miracle Baptist Church of Alexander City. There were more than 200 in attendance.
Now Haven Memorial UMC is in a better position to discover, develop and deploy spiritual leaders that help build the kingdom of God. As Pastors Paul and Carolyn Hillard declare in the vision, “We are Vital in ministry - connecting people with Christ; Vibrant in worship -connecting people with God; and Victorious in living - giving hope to others.”
Haven Memorial UMC is back and ready to face the challenge of making and growing more disciples for Jesus Christ.