‘The Ancestors Are Crying Out’: Why a Dallas Family Stepped Up to Save the Only Church in Addison

A Dallas family has rescued a tiny chapel in Addison — the only church in the entire town — in hopes the revival of this historic site will provide a healing space for racial reconciliation.Don and Wanda Wesson, along with their son Donald, took a huge leap of faith when they purchased the troubled White Rock Chapel site. But they are steadfast about saving the church’s history, which stretches back to a time when slaves, and later freedman and their descendants, gathered there for worship.The Wessons believe their work will lead to a brighter future. A redemption for a shameful past. A physical restoration of a church forged out of tragedy, generosity and reconciliation. A rebuilding of the lives of its re-builders."We want this to be a place God can live in and help us out — because we and the world need a lot of help," Donald Wesson told me last week as we walked the one-acre property.The chapel is a contradiction within a contradiction: The modest structure sits amid an enclave of stately mansions adjacent to White Rock Creek, in the southeastern-most corner of Addison. In turn, the wealthy neighborhood feels a world away from its intersection with Belt Line Road, the town's main drag of tightly packed retail and restaurants.The Wessons felt called to this mission when they first visited the church late last year. "There's a feel, a level of calm, peace that's on this land that's hard to describe," Donald said."And hope," his mother, Wanda, interjected. "The ancestors are crying out for us to be here."  Continue reading...

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