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Churches: Anglican groups will share priest and facilities

By Jason Lesley
Coastal Observer

Two Pawleys Island Anglican churches are coming together in an effort to find an arrangement that would be mutually beneficial.

Grace Church - Waccamaw and Christ the King - Waccamaw are exploring means to assist each other. Grace Church is losing the lease on its worship space at Litchfield Exchange. Christ the King has two worship facilities, a sanctuary at Highway 17 and Alston Road and its Live Oaks Center a quarter mile south on Highway 17. Grace has a rector, the Rev. Tim Surratt. Christ the King has been without a full-time rector for nearly a year.

Kim Fox, a lay minister and non-voting member of the vestry at Grace Church, said preliminary discussions have been “a great, wonderful experience of coming together.”

Fox said the building where Grace conducts its contemporary church services is being sold. “We obviously have been exploring where else to go to be able to worship,” she said. “We have explored various options. One was the possibility of leasing the Live Oaks Center from Christ the King. Once we started talking, it spun into ‘We should come together.’ I don’t know that the word is merge. That step is not being made immediately. It’s a coming together of resources at this point. We are ironing out the details.”

The congregations of Christ the King and Grace Church Waccamaw will come together for two services on March 2, a 9 a.m. traditional and a 10:45 a.m. contemporary with nursery programs at the church and children’s programs at the Live Oaks Center.

Fox said Grace Church is applying for membership in the South Carolina Diocese under Bishop Mark Lawrence and leaders expect to be formally admitted to the diocese at the upcoming convention March 14-15.

“We will hopefully be accepted by the diocese,” Fox said. “Once we move in and everybody gets comfortable and we have some normal operations as two churches coming together, the next step would be to consider whether we want to merge.”

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