East Ridge pastor refuses paycheck for nearly a year to build ministries

Pastor Daniel Beard baptizing a member. (Image: Action Church)

An East Ridge pastor refuses a paycheck for nearly a year in order to launch several ministries at his new church.

In this week's Pay It Forward, Jessica Harthorn surprises him during worship.

Pastor Daniel Beard says he believes the church is more than just four walls, or a building - it's about a people that put their faith in action, and that he knew God would take care of his family.

The hands and feet of Action Church are all over the City of East Ridge.

It's led by Pastor Daniel Beard.

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"He loves the city of East Ridge," said Action Church Member Rhonda Spencer.

Rhonda says you'll find his congregation encouraging the homeless, partnering with the East Ridge Community Food Pantry, hosting Trunk or Treat activities for families, and giving away warm, clean clothes at their clothing closet.

"I've never been in a church that I've felt so at home, and you feel like you have a second family there," said Rhonda.

In 2016, the people of Action Church were meeting in a remodeled used car lot garage.

There were 64 chairs, but for the first Sunday service 110 people showed up.

It quickly became evident they needed a bigger venue.

"It's a huge mixture of people, it's not your ordinary, everyday church," said Rhonda.

That's when Rhonda says Pastor Beard decided to make a sacrifice so his ministry could continue to help others.

He refused to be paid until the church had saved enough money to find a new space.

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Fast forward to last fall, when that dream became a reality.

The new sign was put up, and the pews were brought in to a new location on Germantown Road.

Tonight, we get to see the new building and surprise Pastor Beard in the sanctuary.

"Hi pastor, on behalf of NewsChannel 9 and the McMahan Law Firm, we would like to Pay It Forward to you, for all you do for the community of East Ridge and surrounding areas, and love and support you provide in the church. You are so welcoming and you put your faith in action. Here's $500. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5," surprised Rhonda.

"Wow! What a surprise. Thank you!" said Pastor Beard as the congregation clapped.

Pastor Beard took us downstairs where people were finishing up a community supper.

He says the decision to forgo a pay check was simply about putting HIS faith into action.

"For my wife, she was like how is this going to work? How is this going to happen? So I encouraged her, saying God is going to take care of us," said Pastor Beard.

Minutes later, Pastor Beard was back to taking care of others and spreading the good news.

Do you know someone who deserves $500 for helping others? Nominate them here!

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