Greenville MCC Wins Zoning Battle

Congregation To Move Into New Building

MCC Greenville will soon be holding services in their new building, now that the city has approved the move.

Last issue we told you the story of Greenville MCC. They were denied a permit by the city for what the zoning board said was a failure to address parking and traffic concerns. It was the first time in Greenville's history a church had been denied a zoning permit.

The city's decision caused severe financial hardship for the church because it has had to continue mortgage payments on the purchased property, while meeting rental obligations to remain in its current space.

Church attorney Suzanne Coe told Circuit Judge Danny Pieper that the only reason the board denied the permit was because the church caters primarily to gay and lesbian people. She pointed out that the building had previously been used as a church and a school and that the zoning board never objected.

The Greenville State reports Coe told Judge Pieper that, rather than neighborhood street congestion, "the majority of the testimony [given at the last hearing] against my clients had to do with homosexuality vs. morality."

The church had the option of letting the judge decide the case, but instead they went back before the zoning board, this time with more community support.

Rev. Mick Hinson said at that session the zoning board voted unanimously to approve the church's application.

"We screamed when the decision came down," he said. "Our opponents ran from the room."

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