Mudgee Presbyterian Church will soon be ready to hold services again as work to replace the roof – damaged during the January severe storm - nears completion.
“It was fairly severe damage, a lot of tiles were completely removed from the roof and lots of others were loosened, plus there was a little bit of water damage as well,” Pastor Ian Halbisch said.
“It’s been fairly disruptive to the people of the church, but we’re really thankful for people’s help and assistance.
“Especially Mudgee Public School, who offered use of their hall that’s allowed church to continue on even without the building.
“It’s been four months now and while that’s been a challenge for us it’s also been good for us in lots of ways.
“People have drawn together really well and made the most of it.
“It’s really clarified for people that church is really about people not buildings, we can still be the church even though we’re not meeting in that building and we’re at the school, we’re still God’s people gathered together.”
Work has accelerated in the last fortnight with favourable weather.
“It’s going fantastically, the guys have done a great job, we’re thankful for the weather that we’ve had which always helps with these things,” Mr Halbisch said.
“We’ve had a mixture of local contractors and others working on it.
“At the moment they’re working inside, repainting, new carpet and adjusting furniture.
“It’s been going very well and we expect to be back in a little over a month.
“We worked closely with the Council heritage adviser, we’re sensitive to the heritage aspects of the building and while it looks quite different I think it fits in with other similar buildings around town.”
“I first saw it on videos on Facebook and online, I just thought ‘wow, that’s our church’,” he said.
“I think I was more surprised when I got back and saw the scale of what had happened - because it’s a big building, it’s distinctive, it’s tall – so it’s not until you see it first-hand that you really appreciate it.
“It was considerable damage, but buildings can be repaired and we lost some trees as well, but they too will come back in time.
“We’re thankful for the different experts who helped us work through it.”