By Chris Gregory, Managing Editor

Saved by Grace, a non-denominational church based out of Gallatin, is planning an expansion into Hartsville.

Pastor Dwight Thomas calls Saved by Grace “a community of believers who are just that, saved by grace.”

Members of Saved by Grace church pose during their recent back to school bash in Gallatin.

The church’s mission statement, according to its Facebook page, is to “make an impact in our community by spreading the Gospel, showing love and giving our service.”

Thomas and members of Saved by Grace will be holding a meet-and-greet event on Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m. in the Foodland parking lot. Food will be available, but the main purpose is to gauge the needs of the community.

“We want to share information about our church, and focus on what the people need,” Thomas said.

Thomas started the church just over a year ago out of desire to feed the spiritual needs of the underprivileged.

“I’m a young minister who wants to do something good in the community,” Thomas said. “We started with a Bible study and it grew and grew, with more people coming. We like to focus on the community church.”

Among the ways Thomas has sought to serve the community are providing school supplies to over 200 children in Gallatin, cooking for the fire department staff and visiting with senior citizens at a local retirement home.

Asked why Saved by Grace chose Hartsville as the spot for it second campus, Thomas noted that his family is originally from the town.

“This is where I’m from, my roots,” Thomas said. “It’s where my heart is and where God has led me.”

Thomas is still searching for a location for Saved by Grace, but noted that fellow pastor Albert Strawther has granted permission to use his chapel in downtown Hartsville.

“I want to be in the city,” Thomas said. “We’re a small church that wants to have a big impact and serve a big God..”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.