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Preserving history... A garage sale is being held at the Tapanui Presbyterian Church on Saturday to raise money to go towards earthquake-strengthening the church. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The Tapanui Presbyterian Church is raising funds to earthquake-strengthen the church building.

The church is holding a garage sale on Saturday to help with costs.

Tapanui Presbyterian Church minister the Rev George Ioane Kopa said that since the Christchurch earthquakes, churches throughout New Zealand were required to have their buildings assessed and the Tapanui Presbyterian Church required strengthening work.

Mr Kopa said many churches had had to close as they could not afford the work.

“In our case, we can do something about it,” he said.

Mr Kopa said the estimated cost was about $36,000 and the overall cost for the work was expected to be more than $100,000.

“We’re hoping to start work on the 22nd of this month.”

Mr Kopa said while the work was being undertaken, services would be held in the hall next to the church as it did not require any strengthening.

Mr Kopa said it was the church itself and the foyer area where the work was needed.

“It is home for many here and the building is over 100 years old – it has history and meaning.”

It was worthwhile keeping the church open, he said.

“The church is more than just the building – it’s about the people.”

Mr Kopa said the church was used by a range of groups in the community and it was the church’s responsibility to provide a structurally secure place for worship and other activities.

Tapanui Presbyterian Church parish clerk Jane Stewart said items on offer would include sports gear, clothes and furniture.

“It’s the first major fundraiser that we’ve had,” Mrs Stewart said.

Items for the garage sale had come from members of the church and the wider community.

Mrs Stewart said the church was an important building both as a church and as a venue.

“Obviously, it’s an important place for us to come and gather and worship.”

She hoped people would support the event.

The garage sale will be held on Saturday at the Tapanui Presbyterian Church, from 9am to 1pm.