Group Hopes to Turn Old Church into Museum and Library

STROUDSBURG, Pa. -- A church restoration association in the Poconos is hoping to turn a former house of worship into a place the entire community can enjoy.

Members of the Stroudsburg Little Bethel Historical Association worked to renovate one place a few years ago and now that the inside is finished, they hope to turn this former church into a library and museum.

In the middle of a neighborhood in Stroudsburg sits an old brick building on 3rd Street. If you take a closer look, you'll see signs revealing that it once was a church.

"This was the Little Bethel Church, and it was an AME church that was established in 1868, and it was the only church that minorities could go to at the time," said committee member Wayne Bolt.

Members of the group say the last time this was an operating church was back in the 1970s.

The Stroudsburg Little Bethel Historical Association spent the past few years renovating the place, and now the hope is to actually do something with it.

"We are trying to get this to be something that people can recognize as a historical building, whether it will be a museum or church, but we want people to understand this part of history," Bolt said.

In order to get started, community support is needed. Members are looking for donations from the community. They're holding an open house next week to showcase some of what they plan to put inside.

"Just some artifacts that have been collected over the years, and you can see the progress of the church, and if you look around, you can see pictures from when it was totally a disaster dilapidated building. You know, it's very important to preserve that history," said committee member Tameko Patterson.

That open house is scheduled for Saturday, February 23 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

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