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Raising the steeple: Wesleyan chapel construction hits milestone | News

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Raising the steeple: Wesleyan chapel construction hits milestone
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The campus at Wesleyan College in Macon looks much different than it did in February.

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The 11,500 square-foot facility will seat 300 people and will be used for wedding rentals and community events. It will also provide a home for the campus chaplain and student ministry organizations.

Wesleyan, the first women's college in the world, was founded in 1836 by community leaders and the Georgia Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

"I think they're gonna love it."

That's how Wesleyan Colleges President Ruth Knox predicts students will react, and so far, she's right. Students Chelsea Widener and Eva Moffat can't wait.

Chelsea says, "It's a symbol of Wesleyan's traditions and at the same time of Wesleyan moving forward and changing and growing. "

After a fire destroyed the original Pierce Chapel in 1963, Wesleyan had no chapel for 50 years.

Knox says soon, all her students will have a place to gather, saying, "Now all the campus ministry programs will be in one place so the students who study and learn and grow here will have a place to gather and as I said, have their lives changed."

Sheridan Construction Company placed the steeple on top of the new Pierce Chapel Wednesday afternoon.

The steeple and cross measure at 58 feet tall and in total they weigh in around 6,000 pounds.

The ceremony included a personal touch, a metal sheet that students, faculty, and staff could sign to mark the days significance.

The construction company is placing the sheet up inside the steeple.

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Director of Campus Ministries, Debra Williams, says she hopes the chapel will be, "A place where they find renewal, and respite, and peace and restoration."

Reverend William Hurdle, the campus chaplain and director has been waiting for the chapel, for the 10 years he has worked at Wesleyan.

He says, "I just kept staying , I was determined to stay until they built the chapel."

Now, he believes it will be worth the wait, saying, "It's going to be gorgeous I know that for sure and I'm so happy about it for people who have had their heart set on it."


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