Congregation celebrates shift to historic building

House of Breakthrough Church pastor Damien Goodsir celebrates the official opening of the church...
House of Breakthrough Church pastor Damien Goodsir celebrates the official opening of the church's new home yesterday, after it relocated to the historic former Columba Presbyterian Church in Wansbeck St, Oamaru. PHOTO: HAMISH MACLEAN
New life has officially been breathed into the 1883 Columba Church in Wansbeck and Ure Sts, on the South Hill of Oamaru.

Pastor Damien Goodsir of the House of Breakthrough Church, said the congregation of up to 150 people was thrilled to now be worshipping in the Category 2 Forrester and Lemon-designed Victorian landmark building.

"We're rapt, amazed. It's such a beautiful building," he said.

Yesterday, the House of Breakthrough Church celebrated the official opening of its new home, and, with nine birthday cakes, the nine years House of Breakthrough has been in Oamaru.

Mr Goodsir, who shares pastoral duties with his wife Jacinda, said the type of growth recently experienced in Oamaru - with young families returning to town - was being reflected in the growth of the congregation, which enjoyed the family-oriented services and "more modern" music.

"We have really good people, and we've got some families and young families and often that attracts young families and people."

The Heritage New Zealand list information notes the building was built after Presbyterians met at St Paul's Presbyterian Church, in October 1870, to discuss building a church for those living in the southern part of Oamaru.

In February 1882, Duncan Sutherland bought the land for the church and the church opened on July 19, 1883.

The House of Breakthrough Church spent two years looking for a larger place of worship for its Oamaru congregation after outgrowing its original location in Severn St.

The first service at the church's new home was on April 7.

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