PHILADELPHIA (BRN) – Vietnamese Baptist Church, also known as New Life Baptist Church and Vietnamese International Baptist Church, recently set up an account through the Baptist Resource Network (BRN) to raise funds to restore their church that was destroyed by fire on October 27. There are no fees associated with directly giving through the BRN.
The fire started on the church’s roof and travelled downward, burning through the entire attic (where the children’s room was) to the rest of the back side of the building. To date, the fire marshal has not discovered what started the fire.
Pastor Philip Pham is thankful for the outpouring of support from other local churches and friends and now points to this funding effort as a way for those interested to help.
Immediately after the fire, youth set up a GoFundMe page seeking to raise $10,000 to pay for the restoration of the children’s worship area. Less than 24 hours later, donors gave over the requested amount.
The next stage, Pham shared, was to raise $30,000 for the damaged sanctuary, of which $24,000 has already been raised.
“God is great,” Pham cheered. “He used everyone!”
The church also seeks to raise another $25,000 for the office and lobby, where community members come to receive social services, as well as to replace other items, such as hymn notes, Bibles, microphones, and modems, as shared on the GoFundMe page.
“We are continuing to pray and walk by faith, like we always have,” Pham said, sharing his long-time vision that his church would be a community center, meeting the needs of people near and far.
He and his church leaders have steadily provided services to their neighbors, particularly among several different ethnic groups, which has enlarged their vision for more. Years of immigration and other assistance was documented on hard drives at the church, which were mercifully left untouched by the fire.
“God saved the hard drives, so I know He is doing something bigger,” Pham said. “He will do things even bigger than before.”
Before the COVID-19 pandemic and after trying out the name Vietnamese International Baptist Church, Vietnamese Baptist Church members voted to change its name because the church was also reaching Koreans, Chinese and Cambodians and the name Vietnamese no longer reflected their membership.
But the pandemic slowed those efforts to change the name, which had been the same name as the church’s college and youth ministry. The church is now using the “New Life Baptist Church” name as its “doing business as” name, while it’s original “Vietnamese Baptist Church” name remains the registered name.
Those interested in donating to New Life Baptist Church may donate directly at brnunited.org/give (and select Other as the category, listing New Life Baptist Church as the recipient). All donations are fully tax deductible. Those with questions can email the church at email@example.com.