Alaska Church Moves 18 Inches Closer to Heaven

October 28, 2021 | Mission and Outreach | Zackery Babb

God is working in the Alaskan village of Utqiaġvik. He is delivering on the 30-year-old prayers of the Arctic Adventists to ensure they have a place to meet and worship in a building they own.

Within the last several years, God blessed the congregation with a church they were able to purchase—a house near the center of town. 

Property is hard to come by in Utqiaġvik, so it was clearly a big answer to prayer. However, the building needed a lot of work.

Part of the problem with the property was that every year during the breakup (that’s “spring” for those of you in the lower 48), the church would flood. During the breakup of 2020, the kitchen and living room were both sitting in water. But God had a solution. 

Pastor Jim John, from the Anchorage Northside church at the time, approached the Arctic Adventists with the idea to hold a fundraiser and to get a group of volunteers together to raise the church above the water line. This plan was God’s solution. 

One failed attempt at raising the church in 2020 didn’t deter the volunteers. Planning to try again, this past summer they succeeded. 

The revised plan included building a steel framework under the church and  jacking up the new foundation. In order to accomplish this, steel beams had to be bolted together under the church. It was far easier said than done. But members of the church and community came together to help the volunteers dig trenches for the beams, and many other jobs. 

God even arranged the use of a piece of heavy machinery and an operator to move the beams into place for free! 

Another blessing was finding permafrost (permanently frozen ground) shallower than expected. They were able to build on top of it for solid pilings. The church even has a new paint job. 

Remarkably, God also brought in more than $30,000 in donations to the project through many generous people.

It is evident that God had His hand on this project and revealed it in more ways than one. 

Thanks to the many volunteers, the support of donors and the miracles of God, the church is 18-inches closer to heaven.