News Articles

Chapel groundbreaking celebrated at Ridgecrest

RIDGECREST, N.C. (BP)–Approximately 150 people gathered at Ridgecrest, a LifeWay Conference Center, Sept. 13 for a ground-breaking ceremony for Rutland Chapel, a 300-seat worship facility with fellowship and conference space.
Among guests for the event were employees of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention from its Ridgecrest, Nashville, Tenn., and Glorieta, N.M., locations; and LifeWay trustees and their spouses. Representing the Rutland Family Foundation, which is providing a $1 million gift for the chapel, were Cherry and Robert Rutland and Linda and Guy Rutland. The Rutlands are members of First Baptist Church Covington, Ga.
The two-story facility will include a first-floor chapel with a second floor including space for seminars and conferences. The 10,500 square-foot building, designed by LifeWay architect Davis Byrd, features architecture echoing the style of traditional small churches across the mountains and features a reflecting pool adjacent to it.
The facility will be of materials native to the area, along with extensive use of glass to permit persons to experience the natural wooded setting, according to Byrd, director of LifeWay’s church architecture department.
The Rutland family operates Decatur, Ga.,-based Allied Holdings, Inc., a conglomerate of companies involved in transportation of automobiles from factories.
Mike Arrington, vice-president of LifeWay’s corporate affairs division, which includes Ridgecrest, said the ceremony served also “to celebrate God’s goodness and the ministry of Ridgecrest.”
Observing that last year approximately 55,000 people came to Ridgecrest, and 5,200 of those had made spiritual decisions during their visits, LifeWay President James T. Draper Jr., reminded guests “of the value of these grounds … where God can speak to people in a very special way.”
Robert Rutland said he and his brother had begun a relationship with Ridgecrest in 1946 when their father started bringing them to the center.
“During our visits here, Guy and I both felt the call to become Christian businessmen,” he reflected. “The Lord has really blessed us, and we feel when much is given, much is required.”

    About the Author

  • Charles Willis