Construction is underway on a new sanctuary at Brownwood’s Victory Life Church, where crews have begun to dig the foundation of the planned 1,000-seat facility.   

The sanctuary will be directly adjacent to the current worship building and will finally allow that space to be used for its original purpose as a basketball gym, according to Victory Life assistant pastor Christian McDaniel. When the 23,000 square foot facility is completed, McDaniel said, Victory Life will be able to accommodate its members with just one Sunday-morning service instead of the current two.   

“Our current sanctuary was originally built for a gymnasium for the school,” McDaniel explained. The school, Victory Life Academy, sits adjacent to and is an outreach ministry of the church.   

McDaniel also serves as the academy’s athletic director and head football coach.   

“After Victory Life Church came in … it grew quickly,” he said. “They quickly had to turn this into a sanctuary, so it’s never actually been a gym. The vision many years ago … was a to build a thousand-seat auditorium here and turn this back into a gymnasium for the school. It’s been a lot of years since that was started, and there’s been a lot of obstacles on the way.”   

The church’s location in a floodplain, he said, was among those obstacles.   

McDaniel also said an expansion of the Victory Life property line allowed for a larger, more traditional structure that will be a more cost-efficient option for the church. “Now we don’t have to try to fit this building into a tiny spot,” he said.   

He said construction crews began digging about three weeks ago and that there is no official timetable for the building’s completion. “On these projects, we don’t want to go into a bunch of debt,” he said. “[Starting construction] is going to help us get some momentum, we hope.”   

McDaniel said the aim of the project is simply to reach more people for Christ. “We don’t just want to add numbers. We don’t want to grow because it means more people or more money. We want to grow because that means people’s lives are being changed,” he said.   

“We believe that when people get into a relationship with Jesus and with others, that’s when life change really happens.”   

Victory Life Church is located at 901 C.C. Woodson Rd.