Multisite megachurch drops plans to buy $20 million historic church property

First Christian Church
First Christian Church of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. |

A multisite megachurch in Oklahoma has decided not to purchase a historic church property threatened with demolition.

Crossings Community Church, a congregation with campuses in Oklahoma City, Edmond, and online that averages 8,000 weekly worshipers, had previously considered purchasing the property of First Christian Church of Oklahoma City that has structural damage.

“Unfortunately, the overall cost was much higher than we anticipated," the church said in a statement emailed to The Christian Post on Thursday. "The total cost of this endeavor would exceed $20 million,” the church added in its statement which is also posted online.

“It became far more than what our leadership and elders were willing to invest; particularly in light of our 60-year commitment not to incur any long-term debt.”

Crossings Community Church went on to state that while “this is not the outcome that we had hoped for, we are confident that we have diligently pursued and carefully considered all aspects of this opportunity.”

“We are especially thankful for the great friendship we have developed with First Christian Church during this process, and pray for them as they move forward,” the statement concluded.

In February, Oklahoma City Ward 2 Councilman Ed Shahid posted to Facebook that the demolition of First Christian Church’s building “appears imminent.”

Although the church is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Shahid explained that the owners had too many structural issues and their congregation had dwindled too much to be able to cover the repairs.

In April, First Christian Church announced that they had “signed an agreement” with Crossings Community Church in which the evangelical megachurch would buy the western portion of the property.

“Our congregation voted unanimously to approve moving forward with the sale. As I presented this to the congregation, I put it in the context of resurrection,” wrote FCC Senior Pastor John Malget at the time.

“First Christian Church of Oklahoma City is not dead, but is very much alive as we serve our community and help others see the resurrection in their lives.”

Jennifer Ayotte, spokesperson for Crossings Community Church, said in a statement emailed to CP in April that they were “excited about the possibility of a satellite in this location of our city.”

“We will be spending the coming months evaluating this opportunity as we have no plans of demolishing the iconic structure, but rather have it continue in its originally intended use as a church,” Ayotte said at the time.

In an update provided to CP in late May, Ayotte told CP that Crossings Community Church was planning to hold an informational meeting in the summer regarding next steps for the possibility of purchasing the church.

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