Building hospitality in Detroit

Carl Gladstone, right, stands at the doors of Foundry House with Curtis Hatchell. Curtis is the live-in watchman for the renovation project. ~photo courtesy YLI

KAY DeMOSS
Senior Editor-Writer, Michigan Area

Last week MIConnect reported that the United Methodist Women are selling the Alma Mathews House in New York City. After years of use as a guesthouse for mission leaders and other visitors, the UMW will reinvest proceeds in mission.

This week Carl Gladstone, Director of the Young Leaders Initiative of the Detroit Conference, reports about a project being undertaken in the spirit of the Alma Mathews House.

The rehabbed home, at 1449 Webb Avenue in Detroit, will be a missional hostel for visiting missionaries and volunteers in mission. Called Foundry House, it will also be the base for Motown Mission staff.

Chelsea Spyres, US-2 serving at NOAH in Detroit, brought friends to help with clean-up around Foundry House.

Chelsea Spyres, US-2 serving at NOAH in Detroit, brought friends to help with clean-up around Foundry House.

Student teams have been hard at work preparing grounds for further construction. Major electrical, plumbing, and structural work is being done professionally. Total cost for the project is estimated at $146,000.

Completion of the rehab is expected in February 2016. This timeline will allow spring break mission teams to use the facility when they begin arriving in the city in March.

“Our hope with the Foundry House is to help the church live into its great tradition of hospitality as a means of grace,” Gladstone says. The vision is “to fill the calendar with short and long-term guests contributing their time, donations, and witness alongside this local community,” he continues.

The Young Leaders Initiative welcomes support to raise the remaining $35,000

Skilled volunteers are invited to help with the final touches on the building that hopes to open its doors by February 2016. ~photo courtesy YLI

Skilled volunteers are invited to help with the final touches on the building that hopes to open its doors by February 2016. ~photo courtesy YLI

needed. They also invite skilled teams to complete dry-walling, floor finishing, painting and kitchen installation.

Individuals and churches interested in making a donation can do so here or

through the Detroit Annual Conference Mission & Ministry program with a check to the Detroit Conference Treasurer. Foundry House is listed in Spotlight 2015 under “Young Leaders Initiative #1192.”

Have questions? Contact Carl Gladstone at 313-718-2275.

The United Methodist Women recognize the forever-legacy of Alma Mathews even though they no longer will own the building in New York City’s Greenwich Village. Soon the spirit of Alma Mathews  will live on in the Motor City.

“We pray that this brick and mortar will become the stuff that makes deeper Christian community possible for all who encounter one another at Foundry House,” Gladstone concludes.

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