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Church groups' prayers replace bar and its topless dancers

PINCKARD, Ala. — A rural bar that showcased topless performers has been converted into a church center for work with youth and the poor. The new occupants believe prayer drove the dancers away.

The Rev. Michael Senn of Kings Table Worship Center said his congregation has leased the building where T.J.'s Annex was located, renaming it J.C.'s Annex. The church is expanding from its prefab sanctuary across the street from the former bar.

A new coat of paint hides the message that once beckoned travelers: "Girls! Girls! Girls!" But the T-shaped stage still stands, a single pole in its center.

Senn said members had prayed that God would "dry up" the topless club's business and those prayers were answered when the bar closed.

The pastor said he never thought having a bar nearby was a problem. "What better place to build a church?" he told the Birmingham News.