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This church is building an outdoor amphitheater in case another pandemic hits

City Church in Gastonia plans to rent out the amphitheater for school graduations, concerts and corporate trainings.

GASTONIA, N.C. — City Church in Gastonia will be constructing an outdoor amphitheater to hold socially-distant religious services in the event of future pandemics.

In the coming months, Dickie Spargo, City Church's lead pastor, said they plan to break ground on a 75-acre site at their South New Hope Road campus.

"[It] allows us to be able to worship together," Spargo said. "[It's] also a place for our community to be able to gather when something like this happens again."

When not using the space, the church plans to rent out the amphitheater at affordable rates for high school graduations, community concerts and corporate events.

"We feel like it's going to be multifunctional, not only for our church but, we believe, for our whole county," Spargo said. 

RELATED: Every teacher who wants a vaccine in York County will get one this week. Here's how.

Like many houses of worship, City Church took its Sunday Services online, but Spargo said virtual services can never replace the comfort people feel when they're physically inside a church.

"If this were to happen again, that we have space where we can come together," Spargo said. "A lot of people's lives, right now, unfortunately, are falling apart."

The church is working to draw up engineering plans and raise $500,000 for the estimated construction costs.

Spargo hopes to complete the amphitheater by the end of the summer, and once it's constructed, Spargo said it'll be one of only a few church-owned amphitheaters in the entire country.

"We want to make sure that people's health is safe, secure, and everything in life is usually better outdoors," Spargo said.

For more information on City Church, click here.

RELATED: How to know when you can get the COVID-19 vaccine in the Carolinas

Have a relative or friend in another state and want to know when they can get vaccinated? Visit NBC News' Plan Your Vaccine site to find out about each state's vaccine rollout plan.

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