BEATRICE - It was a Sunday afternoon of celebration for a southeast Nebraska Methodist church. 

The Centenary United Methodist Church in Beatrice held a ceremony in honor of being named to the National Registry of Historic Places. Nebraska has over 1,000 listings to the registry and over 30 in Gage County. The registry serves as the nation's list of cultural resources worthy of preservation. Benefits include protection from adverse projects using federal dollars, financial opportunities and tax credits. 

Michael Sothan of Main Street Beatrice talked about the significance to the city.  

"As we continue to see new investments in the Beatrice community, it's wonderful to know that some of those landmarks, like Centenary United Methodist Church are being a part of that and have matched the energy of what this future can be for our community," Sothan said. 

In recent years, the church has taken on new projects such as installing a geothermal system, a new north entrance, a new audio/visual system and, most notably, work to the bell tower which had suffered lightning damage along with usual wear. 

Beatrice Mayor Bob Morgan was on hand to provide his congratulations. 

"I want to congratulate the members of Centenary United Methodist first, for taking on this massive project," Morgan said. "Secondly, I'd like to congratulate you all on being named to the National Registry of Historic Places. As you look around this building, it's evident it deserves to be on the national registry."