August 5, 2008

Local Congregation Gets Church Free of Charge

By Khalid Moss Staff Writer

In April, Desi Allen, pastor of the nomadic Safe House of Worship, announced to his congregation that unless something drastic happened, he'd have to dissolve the church.

Then, something drastic happened. Someone gave him a church -- debt free. Today and Saturday, Aug. 2-3, members of Safe House of Worship, 870 Mentor Ave., will host a grand opening to celebrate the formal dedication of their spiffy, new spiritual hub.

"A Pentecostal Holiness bishop told a pastor friend of mine that he had a church sitting empty and if he couldn't put a congregation in there he'd have to sell the building," Allen said. "I met with the bishop, and we agreed to bring our church into the Pentecostal Holiness Fellowship. He handed me the keys on June 10 and said, 'I hope you fill it up, sell it and build bigger.' "

Allen likens his congregation's journey to the passage of the Israelites from Egypt to the Promised Land. It took Moses 40 years to find the place where God wanted his people to be. It only took Allen five.

"This will be the fourth time we've moved," Allen said. "We started in Xenia at the Holiday Inn. Then we moved to a banquet hall off of 35 in Beavercreek. Then we moved to National Road in Fairborn. The new Safe House of Worship is in the Dayton, Riverside area."

Allen said sometimes the thrust of a ministry has to change. His willingness and ability to accept change has put him and his flock in a better place.

"Churches get locked in by where they are and what they own," Allen said. "What you have to do in following the Lord is change your vision and your purpose. When we started this church, we thought we would always be in Xenia. But we prayed and a door was opened. We followed and now we are celebrating a miracle and celebrating new life as a church."

Contact this reporter at (937) 225-2167 or [email protected]

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