PORT ARTHUR — United Methodist Temple in Port Arthur is back in its worship center for the first time since Harvey.
The church, located off highway 73 was flooded with 13 inches of water.
Throughout this year, the United Methodist Temple has been using its gym for worship services.
After several months of rebuilding, the first service back inside the sanctuary took place Sunday morning.
Church member Carol Wommack says "It was wonderful to be back in the worship center. Of course, it's new, re-done and very exciting."
Anticipation and excitement carried into the service, overflowing the room and causing a little trouble to get everyone a seat.
Not a bad problem to have, considering this is the first time church members were able to come back and worship in the center, almost a year after Harvey.
During Harvey, 13 inches of rain stood inside the United Methodist Temple and the only way to get inside was by boat.
Temple chair of trustees Charles Morgan says "We came up two days after Harvey had hit and literally paddled in kayaks and canoes up to the front door."
The facility received major damages inside and multiple artifacts dating back throughout the church's history were lost.
Yet, what remained was a group of people who who didn't allow the storm to dictate how and where they worshiped.
For the past 8 months services were held in its small gym.
"I think it shows such a tenacity and a ferocity of spirit, that they are just not going to give up," says senior pastor Phil Chamberlin. "They're going to keep moving, overcome and build back better then they were before. This is a moment that people have been waiting for, for pretty much a year."
Chamberlin adds that members of the church made it a priority to hold this service before the one-year anniversary came around.
A service that gave people hope, hope to continue rebuilding their homes and to keep the faith that things will be better.
"This is a victory. This is not only a victory for our city but a victory for our church. A lot fo folks are dealing with small victories right now, whether you're getting your bedroom or bathroom back up," says Port Arthur Mayor Derrick Freeman. "This is a victory today, a one year mark and I'm happy to be here today."
The church still isn't finished with restoration efforts, a new reception area, offices and the kitchen are still on the to do list.
Perhaps the biggest of them all will be a new child care check in station that will actually look like a train station.
In fact, the reason the worship center took this long is because they wanted the child care facility back up and running.
Within months, children and teachers were back in at the beginning of December.
EDITOR'S NOTE: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the church had been flooded with two inches of water when the actual number was 13 inches. 12News regrets the error and it has been corrected.