Ensley church gives 6-Acre building and school to Rock City Church for free

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - Every Sunday morning, thousands fill Boutwell Auditorium.

It's a sign of how quickly the Rock City Church has grown. But this is just a temporary spot.

Pastor Mike McClure, Jr. always knew he would return to Central Park, which is where he grew up.

"I told God when I was 9 years old playing for the Charges and Coach Key--I said, 'God if you bless me to make it out, I make you a promise I'll come back'."

For years he would drive by Central Park Baptist Church which sits right in the heart of Ensley. 

His prayer was very specific.

"It was intense, it wasn't long. I said, 'God, bless us with Central Park Christian'," McClure recounts.

The 110-year old structure sits on six acres, which houses not only the church, but a school too.

At its height, Central Park had over 2000 members. But today, only 25 members attend regularly.

That's not enough to sustain operations. 

But remember, Pastor McClure had been praying.

"So I reached out to Dr. Parker originally to lease it or potentially buy it," McClure says. "By the time I had walked through the building, I knew my six-year lease was over.

In the fullness of time, God sent Rock City Church and Pastor Mike," said Dr. Levan Parker, Headmaster of Central Park School.

He went back to the church members and the decision was unanimous: they would give Rock City Church the school and church...all of it...debt free.

"It just proves that good hearted, Godly people still exist," McClure says. "It tells our city that although there's an undertone of racism and hatred, that's not the stigma of people that are currently here. There's still love in the city, there's still hope in this city."

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