LAKELAND, Fla.—Generous financial gifts have helped Cornerstone Baptist Church pay off its mortgage.

When a member of the church passed away, he left the church $20,000, but in giving that gift, he encouraged the rest of the members to match that total.

The church body took on the challenge and ended up exceeding their goal of $20,000 by raising an additional $30,000, enough to pay off the $50,000 balance of the church’s mortgage.

On Sunday, May 30, the church celebrated being debt free by burning a copy of the mortgage agreement. Pastor Larry Lindow invited current and former deacons to the front of the church for the mortgage burning. He thanked the men for their “leadership and direction, in good times and bad,” and said he looked forward to many more years of service as a church.

Caleb Wilson, a youth worker and children’s church teacher, says, “I’m very thankful for this church, for Cornerstone, my home church of 19 years, my whole life. I’m very thankful for my Cornerstone family and this amazing blessing. God is good.”