By Pamela Brownstein
The dedication service of the new Love House Community Bowling Center on Monday, Sept. 16, was more of a celebration.
When the Community Worshippers performed, singers were backed by drums and a keyboard, and dancers dressed in red and white excited the people packed into the bowling alley on Ribaut Road. The “Halleluiahs” were contagious, and soon the crowd of more than 100 was clapping along. Those in attendance represented the diversity and vibrancy of Beaufort — young and old, black and white — and were all there to support Love House Ministries in its acquisition of the bowling alley to create a safe place for the community to gather and have fun.
The event welcomed local officials and elected representatives as well as religious leaders, brought together by Senior Pastor Randy Roberts.
When the leader of Love House Ministries addressed the crowd, Roberts said, “It is my prayer that this place will unite.” He said he hopes the center will be a place where even gang members can come and put aside their differences in order to enjoy the recreation.
He also asked businesses, families and other organizations to help make the bowling alley a place where everyone across the county can come and feel safe void of alcohol, tobacco and crime. “Together, with God’s help, we become stronger,” he prayed.
The vision of the center, read by Gaynelle Dantzler, included enriching the community through fun and laughter; assisting in reducing youth crime; providing healthy activities for the elderly and other educational seminars; and serving as a place for families to come together.
During Sy Commandy’s reading from the Old Testament, he chose the passage, “This is the day that the Lord has made.” It seemed a fitting message for the joyous occasion, and a look ahead for the many days that the community center will be open and offering a positive experience that goes beyond bowling.