American Bible Society, one of the first non-profits in the U.S., is relocating from New York City to Philadelphia after having sold its national headquarters for $300 million, the ministry has announced.
The ministry, which has been based out of New York City for about 200 years, is relocating to the historic center of Philadelphia, an area often called the most historic square mile in America, American Bible Society said in a statement.
ABS, which will celebrate its bicentennial next year, will still maintain a presence in New York, it said.
"We are thrilled that we will be starting a third century of service headquartered here in Philadelphia," said American Bible Society President and CEO Roy Peterson. "Home to America's first hopes as a new nation, Philadelphia is now home to a very bright future for American Bible Society."
American Bible Society put its 12-story NYC headquarters up for sale to "unlock the value of the site" to further the non-profit's mission.
"The sale is a strong mission accelerator," said American Bible Society Board Chairman Nick Athens. "As we prepare to enter a third century of ministry, we believe that now is the time to unlock the significant market value of the mid-Manhattan address and reinvest the proceeds to extend our mission-focused ministry."
The new location was chosen because of factors such as strategic collaboration opportunities, affordability and livability, according to the ministry.
"Philadelphia is a place where businesses and nonprofits receive a warm reception," Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter was quoted as saying. "On behalf of the City of Philadelphia, we're honored to welcome American Bible Society to its new home."
One of the ministry's founders and its first president, Elias Boudinot, was a native son of Philadelphia.
Ministry offices will encompass nearly 100,000 square feet in a building.
The ministry, which seeks to make the Bible available to every person in a language and format each can understand and afford, has also proposed creating a Bible Discovery Center on the first floor, as well as a conference center, Rare Scriptures Depository and scholarly working library on the concourse level of the building.
"As we work toward the goal of having 100 million Americans engaging with God's Word and 100 percent of the world's languages open for Bible engagement, our new Philadelphia headquarters will become the launching pad for Bible ministry in the U.S. and around the world," Peterson added.