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Perry Speaks At New Dallas Church Opening

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - First Baptist Dallas opened a new facility last week, just in time for Easter services, but this past Sunday marked the official dedication of the $130 million campus in downtown. It was a major project that added to the Dallas skyline and took five years to finish, and some heavy hitters came out to share in thanks.

“My overall emotion is towards God, and what he’s done to help us create this oasis in the heart of a great city,” said Dr. Robert Jeffress, the church’s pastor.

Members and visitors — including a number of dignitaries — were greeted by a towering fountain with a cross mounted on top. “Wow, this is quite a place,” said Gov. Rick Perry during the service. “This is how we do it in Texas.” Perry spoke for about five minutes, sharing his own words of comfort from the pulpit. “We must love all, welcome all, and be a model of Christ to all.”

There was speculation that Perry could have been using the opportunity to speak to a large audience, one that will have plenty of voting power in the next presidential election. The governor made no political statements during his speech but, after Perry’s comments, Jeffress joked about endorsing the governor in 2016 before recalling how things turned out in 2012. That drew laughter from those in attendance.

“That was all in humor. We have no idea what the governor’s plans are,” Jeffress said. “The governor is here because he is the governor of this state. I wouldn’t read anything else into it.”

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