Two Churches Under One Roof After Superfund Designation
By Ethan Calloway
Two churches of two different denominations are now under the same roof in Bristow after suddenly learning that the EPA was designating First Assembly of God's property a superfund site.At Bristow First Church of God, Sunday services are a little different these days."When we heard about the need, we thought, 'You know what? The right thing to do is to open up our doors and make this thing happen,'" said Pastor Tom Hopkins.Across town, the congregation at Bristow First Assembly of God found itself abruptly looking for a new home.In August, the Environmental Protection Agency designated the church's property a toxic superfund site, forcing them out of the location, immediately. "There were two oil refineries that were on that site and a proper cleanup was never done and as a result, there is - not just oil - but a number of contaminants in the land that the church was built on," said Hopkins.Now, the two congregations are worshiping in the same church, holding First Church of God's Sunday services in the mornings and First Assembly of God's in the afternoons."We're in this for the long haul and in the same way that you would open up your home to a family member that was displaced or without a place to stay, we're just making it work," Hopkins said.Hopkins added that the two congregations are now joining together for community outreach projects.The clean-up of the superfund site is expected to take years to complete.
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