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Thursday, Dec 18, 2014

NJ Pastor Aims to Turn Porn Shop Into 'God's House'

  • (Photo: facebook/Fantasy World Adult Superstore)
    The Fantasy World Adult Superstore in New Jersey.
May 15, 2013|3:00 pm

A New Jersey pastor says he is on a mission to get rid of a local porn shop in his community by purchasing the building that houses the X-rated operation and converting it into a church.

"We're going to turn a porn house into God's house," Pastor Pat Sharkey, 51, told USA Today in an earlier interview.

Sharkey, who leads Victory Christian Fellowship, and real estate developer Don Finelli, 65, signed a contract last month to purchase the Fantasy World Adult Book Store for $275,000 and now have less than two months to come up with the money they are trying to raise through investments and donations.

Located on the edge of a community called Mud City in New Jersey, Sharkey says the God-fearing community has wanted the store to go for a long time and many of its members have praised his decision.

"This has been a community eyesore for over 40 years," Sharkey told The Christian Post on Wednesday.

"A lot of businessmen who hate driving by it are willing to help, and Christians, too. We had two Christian doctors who are making significant responses," he said.

Since Sharkey and Finelli began their public appeal for financing the project, they have raised approximately $100,000 as of Wednesday.

"It's going very well," said Sharkey of their fundraising efforts.

"I've really not been able to work too hard on it but the reality is instead of going to a bank we're just going to privately finance it from people in the community who have the resources to put it up and give them five percent of their money, which is hard to get five percent nowadays," he added.

He pointed out that the investments will be secured by the property. If people also prefer to just donate to the mission, their contributions are welcome as well, explained Sharkey.

Stafford Township Council President Henry Mancini confirmed in the USA Today report that while the property is still technically listed as active, Sharkey has entered into talks about purchasing the property.

"I can confirm that Pastor Sharkey has met with township officials to discuss the potential of him purchasing that property and turning the use into a church," Mancini said. "From the township's standpoint, we would be happy to work with Pastor Sharkey for a positive change in use. ... There is no doubt about it, it would be a welcomed change in use."

The building currently has no visible windows, no neighbors within a 100-feet radius, and covers about 2,400 square feet according to USA Today.

"We went in[side] to see it," noted Finelli in the report. "We had to go check it out. I took my motorcycle on purpose, because I wanted to wear my helmet, so nobody could see me. But I went in and it was so dark, and I didn't think anybody was in there. And they have booths in the back. ... I couldn't see, I go to go into a booth and I bump into some guy and he's like, 'Hey! Hey!'"

"It's wall to wall — trash," added Sharkey who is also a school teacher.

Sharkey currently leads a congregation of 50 and anticipates that his group will eventually outgrow the porn space after they have converted it. However, they are presently focused on simply clearing it out from the community.

"I probably should have more of a vision, but for now, it's just a simple church and we're leaving it in God's hands. If we outgrow the place, [and] I'm sure we will, it's an investment," said Sharkey.

"The best part of it is we get rid of this blight in our community because the town is a really God-fearing community. They want that out. There is a lot of positive vibe for [the church]," he added.

Source URL : http://www.christianpost.com/news/nj-pastor-aims-to-turn-porn-shop-into-gods-house-95950/