Spartanburg church donates vacant lots to Habitat for Humanity

By Jessica Brodie

SPARTANBURG—What does a congregation do when they have three pieces of unused property next to their church parking lot and no plans to use it?

They shine the light of Christ by donating it to Habitat for Humanity so people in need can have a place to live.

That’s what happened with El Bethel United Methodist Church this year, when they finalized paperwork transferring the lots from the church to the local nonprofit organization.

“The upkeep of the property was becoming a burden to members keeping the property in accordance with city code enforcement,” explained the Rev. Tommy Hill, church pastor.

In July, someone suggested the idea of donating the property to Habitat, Hill said. The decision was unanimous.

Trustees meant with the church council in August, which also approved the proposal.

“They were excited about giving the property to a family in need and possibly gaining new members,” Hill said.

As for Habitat, Hill said, they were “just thrilled” to get property on the south side of Spartanburg to build houses.

After a lengthy process among the church council, District Board of Property, Lee Close of Habitat and attorneys, the Deed of Transfer was signed Feb. 13.

Hill said the experience was a blessing to church members.

“We hope by this we start something that will help our church grow and become an example for others,” Hill said. “By giving, we encourage others to get involved and help others become involved in the community around the church.”

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