$250,000 project ongoing at former Greenville Meijer facility

By Kelli Ameling • Last Updated 5:22 pm on Friday, January 27, 2012

Plans call for the old Meijer building to look like this at the completion of a $250,000 remodeling project.

GREENVILLE — The old Meijer building is fast becoming a focal point for community activities.

Members of Jesus Non-Denominational Church on Peck Road accepted the donation of the North Lafayette Street building in 2009 with the goal of renovating it into a community facility.

The building is currently home to the Arms of Love Store, Hands of Jesus Food Pantry and Thrifty Acres BMX Track of Greenville.

All three ventures have been a success, according to Pastor Tommy Turner.

The BMX track, owned by Helmets On, has hosted numerous events, the most recent one bringing in about 1,000 people, boosting Greenville’s economy as a result.

“We had restaurant and hotel owners calling us and asking us to give them a heads up (the next time an event takes place),” Tuner said.

Hands of Jesus Food Pantry has seen about 3,000 people each month who come in to receive a hot meal.

Arms of Love Store is a donation-based second-hand store managed by Pastor Karen Morales. She partners with local organizations to help people get on their feet by working with the Housing Commission, which lets people work for their rent.

Morales said people have been very generous by helping to donate items and their time to run the store, something that is always needed.

Turner said the revenue is what helps feed the community.

“Thank you to everyone,” Morales said. “If it wasn’t for the community, we wouldn’t have it.”

Morales also has provided a four-week winterization class to help people get certified and on their feet.

All the ventures appear to be successful thus far in supporting and helping community members.

Once the final remodeling is completed at the building, which will cost about $250,000, the church will be able to offer these items and more to the community. The pantry will be able to hold more people and offer a more comfortable space.

Jesus Non-Denominational Church will move from its Peck Road location into the new building, leaving the church building to be used for some of its preschool classes and daycare.

The new building will also offer classrooms for daycare and preschool opportunities, as well as a lobby and youth areas.

The remodeled building will also house an auditorium that will hold more than 1,000 people. Turner said the BMX track will continue to occupy the building until the auditorium is ready for remodeling, hopefully in five years or less.

The church has been meeting and working with community members to define what is needed, especially for youth in the Greenville community.

In the future, church members hope to expand to an area where sports, tutoring, afterschool programs and more can be offered. Turner said he is also working with the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, the Greenville Community Center and local schools to host events at the new complex as well.

“God is blessing us,” Turner said.

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