Last Wednesday evening, the congregation met on the construction spot to dedicate the church and anoint the ground with holy oil.
"God has answered our prayers," said Carnes, standing next to the new foundation on the hill on the corner of Old Highway 99 and Pyles Road in Chapel Hill.
Grace Church has met at various locations in the past five years, including the Forrest High School Auditorium, the old church on Depot Street and more recently in the back of Becky's Restaurant on Horton Parkway.
Carnes and his congregation have had the vision of the new building for years, never giving up on the dream through each move and each new temporary location.
One year ago, Carnes asked the congregation for permission to move forward and they approved the action, voting unanimously to search for a piece of land to build a sanctuary.
"On this spot the building will sit. From here we will worship the Lord and spread His love throughout this community," Carnes declared Wednesday.
The 19-acre plot was purchased from Isaac Zimmerle of Prime Builders Inc. in Chapel Hill
Prime Builders will be the construction firm for the church. The building will be funded by the congregation through monthly donations and revenue obtained as the church continues to grow.
The building is expected to be finished by late summer with services beginning in the early fall after church members finish up the painting, trimming and final touches needed before opening.
The dedication service is tentatively scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 19.