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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Nice example

Note: A print version of this story can be seen in the November issue of LareDOS in Laredo, Texas, or online at www.laredosnews.com.

By MIKE McILVAIN

Common ground must taste pretty good, judging from approving nods at
10 East Del Mar Blvd. where Baptists and Catholics share facilities.
First Baptist Church is in the process of building its new facilities
not far away behind the Post Office on Del Mar and temporary site host
Mary Help of Christians School is also growing, eyeing a new place on
the Bob Bullock Loop, but seem glad for the temporary shared
experience.
"It really has been pleasant working with Sister Suzanne Miller and
the nuns and a pleasure, knowing we're all ministering for Jesus
Christ," FBC Pastor Ron Scott said, smiling. "Words can't express all
of it."
Scott smiled again, noting that FBC baptisms are held in the MHC swimming pool.
Sister Suzanne echoed Scott's sentiment and facial expression,
pointing to shared classrooms.
"It turned out to be great that they rented from us," Sister Suzanne
said. "They are kind and generous, great renters, and we've had a
wonderful example of Christian unity.
"I told them if they ever need space they should call us on the Loop.
We'll always remain friends."
FBC has been renting space at MHC for a year and hopes to be in its
new 8-acre site sometime next year. MHC hopes everything is in place
at their new location in time for the 2008-09 school year.
Salesian-run MHC has been on its Del Mar site for several years, but
concrete plans for their new facility are on hold until all the
paperwork is complete. FBC has some of its plans posted on its Web
site at www.fbclaredo.org.
FBC is currently headquartered in a MHC building, siding Candlewood
St., near the intersection with Del Mar.
Moving into its new facility should end  FBC's nomadic period. FBC was
at 2919 Malinche for 40 years, but outgrew that building and moved to
the Nixon High School Annex for 9 months before renting from MHC. FBC
celebrated 125 years in Laredo in October with the land dedication for
the new church.
FBC has a 14-member building committee overseeing work on the
26,531-square foot facility.
"These are very exciting times," Scott said. "It's going to be a great
location. It's fronting Bartlett and you can hit Del Mar with a rock."
Scott counts some 200 in attendance each Sunday with members coming
from as far away as Mines Road and Rio Bravo. Scott feels the numbers
could double once in the new church.
Music and youth programs are included in the plans as is a playground
and continuation of a real-time Spanish-language service with
listeners wearing translating receivers.
Scott, an Alabama native, has been in Laredo for 10 years and served
FBC as pastor for 4. He was ordained in Alabama and here when the
previous pastor left, so he was asked to take the role.
"Here we are and plan on staying," Scott said. "I love the mix of cultures.
"My Spanish is bad, but I love trying. I have to excuse myself often,"
he added, smiling.

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