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Closing Church Gives Back to Community in Lycoming County

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WILLIAMSPORT -- One church in Lycoming County made the difficult decision to close due to low turnout. In one final act of kindness, that congregation is using what's left of its money to give back to the community -- even giving a non-profit organization a brand new van.

Over the past ten years, American Rescue Workers -- a non-profit in Williamsport -- has put this van to good use. But about a month ago, tragedy struck.

"We advanced forward but there was a car that came through the red light from the left he ran the red light," said warehouse manager Jason Wilson. Thankfully, he -- and everyone with him in the wreck -- was okay. "It was pretty scary though," he added.

As for the van -- that was already in desperate need of an upgrade -- that's a different story. American Rescue Workers didn't have the money to repair it.

One day later -- thanks to a donation from a nearby church -- the "Rescue Workers" were able to buy a new one.

"Our other one was a ten passenger van this is a fifteen," said Mike Kane of American Rescue Workers. "And the people at Alexander Kia were awesome to work with. They found us this van which was almost brand new."

About five years ago, a former church in the Williamsport area decided to close due to low turnout. After liquidating their property, the church members were left with a pot of money -- and they've decided to donate all of it to other needy groups in the area.

"It's humbling first of all that God would allow you to have an opportunity in doing something that means so much to a group of people," said Anita Tressler of Linden.

Even after giving American Rescue Workers money for the van, the church members still have money they're looking to give to other organizations in the Williamsport area.

"They gave another significant amount to Expectations Womens Center for an ultrasound machine," added Kane.

"We wanted to serve and by helping the Rescue Workers we can in turn serve others," added Tressler.

As for that new van -- American Rescue Workers plan to put new decals on it soon.



  • Brian Reeder

    I’m not sure why more people don’t attend church,but this is a wonderful thing in a sad situation.God Bless helping others.

  • L. C.

    What is the name of the church that closed? I can’t find it in the article anywhere. Did they want to remain anonymous?

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