Ethics: Should Church Reject Million Dollar Offer for Property?

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What would you do Wednesday!

Today’s scenario is inspired by the current negotiations of the city of Atlanta to buy Friendship Baptist Church. More information on the negotiations can be read in this article: Friendship Baptist rejects Atlanta’s $13.5 million offer for stadium site.

In this scenario, you are a church board member. The board has just sat down to review an offer from the city to buy the church property including the land and building. The city wants the property to build a sports complex which will grow the area economically and bring many visitors.

The church owns property nearby where the current congregation could be moved and facilities rebuilt.

The following figures are in consideration:

  • Church property is valued at $400,000.
  • Rebuild costs are $300,000.
  • City offer is $1,000,000.

After much deliberation, the board is split. Half of the board rejects the city’s offer and wants to counter with $3,000,000. The other half wants to take the current $1,000,000 offer.

You cast the majority vote.

What would you do and why?

  • Vie to not sell the property.
  • Reject and counter.
  • Accept current offer.
  • Counter-offer with future revenue trails, free tickets and a gospel booth.
  • Or….

Here I blog…
Mark

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tagged as , in Christianity,Church Issues,Culture

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jason Neal July 3, 2013 at 10:23 am

But the city offers them not $1M but ca $15M. And they counter with $25M.

2 Mark Lamprecht July 3, 2013 at 11:42 am

@Jason Neal What are you talking about?

3 Mark Lamprecht July 3, 2013 at 2:13 pm

What are you talking about?

4 KendellCook July 6, 2013 at 1:07 am

I think that there is a lot that goes into this from a financial point of view as well as a chirstian one. 
First, Why does the City want THIS Spot so much? Developing the city? Trying to remove churches from an area? This is important information that is absent. 
Second, what is the true cost of the move? it may only cost $300k to rebuild and buy property, but what about time, where will they meet, will we lose membership? Can we relocate to an area that is close, I would image not if the city wants this spot so badly. 
Third, Given clear answers to numbers 1/2 I think that there is no moral obligation to make as little a profit as possible. Frankly, the more money that is made, the more money that can be spent on the Gospel.  Would I counter the offer if I knew the city had to have the property for a non-sinful purpose and were over a barrel, YES. if I could support one more missionary, buy one more gospel tract, etc. There is a lot history in these churches, and that isn’t something that should simply be sacrificed for the almighty dollar. It seems that a lot of people would be hurt by this church being destroyed because of the history.

5 William Thornton July 7, 2013 at 7:10 am

Aha, church occupies property the city wishes to have in order to build a new stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. This is, as they say, ‘bidness’ and the church should charge what the market will bear, relocate to an appropriate location, and move on with ministry.
The city has an alternative site if the church insists on the $25m.
Since a buyer has offered the church $15m, one would have to say that the property is worth at least that much.
The church will accept an offer of either $15m or close to it, and Atlantans can skip church eight Sundays a year and go to a Falcons game at a spiffy new stadium.

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