A happy addition to the Southern Province in the 1980’s arose from anguish in another land. The turmoil in Nicaragua in the 1970’s led many to flee to America, and some of them were Moravians. By 1979 there were 25 to 30 Nicaragua Moravians settled in the Miami area, and that September they began holding regular meetings under the inspiration of Daphne Ordonez.
Hearing of this, the Moravian Church sent a fact-finding mission which reported back that they planned to stay in America, that they wanted to remain Moravians, and that they sought to be part of the Southern Province. They attended Coral Ridge, the nearest Moravian church, but that was 20 miles away. What was needed was a new church.
The next step was fellowship status, and by July 1980 the Miami Fellowship was renting an Episcopal church for weekly meetings. Provisional church status was granted two years later, and Melvin Klokow, pastor of Coral Ridge, began serving as part-time pastor.
The drive for full church status continued when David Guthrie was called as organizing pastor in 1986. The Provincial Elders Conference approved the name Prince of Peace, and the congregation dates its formal organization as a full member of the Southern Province from the presentation of its charter on November 30, 1986.
Paralleling the organizing of the congregation was the building of the church. Land was bought in 1984, and the first stage of construction, a modular building, was erected. More than 500 people attended the dedication on March 1, 1987, which was presided over by Bishop George Higgins.
The second stage of construction was a 350-seat sanctuary, which was dedicated on February 20, 1994. Some 1,200 people, including Bishops Neville Neil, John Wilson, and Bob Iobst, attended the service. The overflow crowd joined the service via television in the old sanctuary.
So what was sown in tears as refugees from a war-torn land was reaped in joy with a new church in a new land, and still members of one Unity, the Moravian Church.