TYLER, Texas (KETK) – This year’s Christmas was a little bit different for Colonial Hills Baptist Church in Tyler. The sanctuary flooded after one of their water heaters burst, leaving them host their Christmas service in the church’s gymnasium.

Pastor Steve Alberts said a staff member went to the church around 9 a.m. on Christmas Eve and was found water everywhere.

“She said there’s a lot of water in the sanctuary and then, so we came up and we just started calling people and they started coming,” said Alberts.

He said about 70 people showed up to help clean up the space.

“We needed them and they came and so we were laughing, we were rejoicing, we were also grieving. It was a lot of fun the family came together in a major way,” said Alberts. T

he sanctuary was flooded with four inches of water, damaging several areas of the building.

He said that he’s grateful for how the church family came together to assist in the flood recovery. Alberts believes it will take months to repair the water damage.

“It all worked out, so I am glad we had this facility, and it turned out to be really nice. Very beautiful,” said Bill Bumpas, church member.

Members thought that the stage came together beautifully in the gymnasium and enjoyed the service all around.

“Our pastor always goes to the heart of things, he talks about Jesus and why he came but not just the Christmas story, but also why Jesus came,” Susie Howell, church member said.

Pastor Alberts shares why this particular Christmas is so meaningful to him.

“Next time will be in 11 years to have Christmas on Sunday, and so a great way to celebrate Christmas is to go to church. And so, it was good, seeing the family here,” said Alberts.


Stay up-to-date with the latest local news, sports, weather, politics and more using the KETK mobile app on Android and iPhone.