City tells 'house-church' it is in vi...

City tells 'house-church' it is in violation | NEWS | Asheville...

There are 136 comments on the Asheville Citizen-Times story from Mar 8, 2008, titled City tells 'house-church' it is in violation | NEWS | Asheville.... In it, Asheville Citizen-Times reports that:

The people of Zacchaeus House will have to find another place to worship after Easter.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Asheville Citizen-Times.

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earthtrekker

United States

#124 Mar 10, 2008
Just Facts wrote:
<quoted text>
I asked a friend in code enforcement. The house does not meet the standards required by state law. There are other houses in Asheville providing similar services, mostly for rehabilitation, and they are meeting them. These ladies were told to get up to code, or cease to operate, and they have not met the requirements. There has to be enough exits from the residence in case of emergency (fire), beyond what is required for a single family residence. There has to be fire extinguishers as well as smoke detectors and, depending on the type of heating, possibly a carbon monoxide detector. Evacuation plans have to be developed and posted, etc... A person just can't open a business, invite the public in, disregard safety issues, and state law regulates what constitutes these codes, not the city nor the council.
Could be true.

But in this case there may be a blurred line between a private home inviting guests and a building serving the public.

Does anyone know if this is a case of a church existing in a neighborhood zoned Single Family or Duplex Residence Only? That would be my issue, that the City would prohibit a small-scale house church in such a neighborhood. The rest of it, I don't really care about that much.
goforth

Asheville, NC

#125 Mar 10, 2008
earthtrekker wrote:
<quoted text>
Does anyone know if this is a case of a church existing in a neighborhood zoned Single Family or Duplex Residence Only? That would be my issue, that the City would prohibit a small-scale house church in such a neighborhood. The rest of it, I don't really care about that much.
The ACT article states:
"The small “house-church” was cited by the city for having a church in a residence, and its two ministers, the Rev. Amy Cantrell and the Rev. Chrystal Cook, were told they would have to bring the house up to code as a public gathering place or close."

Thus, it sounds like the house does not meet city building codes for public gatherings. It would appear it has nothing to do with where the house is located. They don't have to move to another location; they only have to bring the current building up to code, where it sits. That sounds pretty straight forward to me.
Amy E styx

Greenville, SC

#126 Mar 10, 2008
Hello. I attend Zacchaeus house. I've read all of the comments posted and I have to say that for all the positive and negative comments noted that I am thankful to live in a city in which so many of its citizens are concerned with what is going on in their community. It says a lot about the people. The people of Asheville are good folks and I have seen plenty of groups formal/informal/Christian/non- Christian who help out the needy. Several of my co-workers have donated clothes and food and have never stepped foot in Z-House. Helping people is relational and not structural. Its about getting out of our comfort zones.
Yes, there are many different kinds of folks there. Jesus called his disciples from all walks of life. I may sit by felons or drug addicts on Sunday but am I any better if I am not-I have my own "legal" addictions and working for a corporation may be "legal" but doesn't mean it is any more moral than any place else. I'm certainly not casting stones. We are all broken. We need each other.
I agree to "Give to Ceasear's what is his and to God's what is God's." If they are in violation and a law is broken you can be rest assured that Amy and Crystal are trying to work with the city and their neighbors to alieve this situation.
When it comes to what is to be given to God, that is us taking care of each other.
God's work is bigger than a house. The love that it is in this house transcends the building. The Church is all of us working together. Zacchaeus House is church home in our hearts. It will continue no matter if it is on S. French Broad, another location, Pritchard Park, or a street corner. Its about people reaching out to each other mutually.
aritonang

Jakarta, Indonesia

#127 Mar 11, 2008
From Indonesia,
This housing law enforcement looks similar to anti-subversive activities law in PRC (China) and DRK (North Korea). What is next? Political correctness auditors?
Rob Close

Brookline, MA

#129 Mar 11, 2008
this is entirely pathetic on behalf of the city. telling people where & when they can worship together is entirely un-american.
sweetpea

United States

#130 Mar 11, 2008
A violation of the law is a violation of the law..get the place in line with the ordinnces and go on with the work. If God is in it, He will provide the needs to work within the guidlines of the law of the land...otherwise He would not have commanded us to obey the law of the land...
Relativism is a destructive undercurrent to a nation...if it is a 'good work' who cares if it is illegal? God does...get the laws changed or obey them
sweetpea

United States

#131 Mar 11, 2008
Whatever wrote:
Why not use this forum to come up with a solution instead of complaining.
What needs to be done to the house to bring it up to code?
Donate your time, money and energy to getting the house up to code and then this will all be solved.
Way to go WHATEVER!...high five!
Tom P

Lake Lure, NC

#132 Mar 11, 2008
Matt,
What the heck are you up to! You are still my favorite "AWM"!!

I think a few hundered folks should show up for easter service this easter. We used to have 20 and 30 at our house every week for church and I would have gone to jail before letting the gov take that away.
Matt Cole wrote:
Tell the City too bad and to take a look at your right protected by the First Amendment of the Constitution. Oh, the Constitution?? That's that document written to LIMIT government interference in our lives and that you took an oath to uphold and protect, city officials!!

Since: Feb 08

United States

#133 Mar 11, 2008
Amy E styx wrote:
Hello. I attend Zacchaeus house. I've read all of the comments posted and I have to say that for all the positive and negative comments noted that I am thankful to live in a city in which so many of its citizens are concerned with what is going on in their community. It says a lot about the people. The people of Asheville are good folks and I have seen plenty of groups formal/informal/Christian/non- Christian who help out the needy. Several of my co-workers have donated clothes and food and have never stepped foot in Z-House. Helping people is relational and not structural. Its about getting out of our comfort zones.
Yes, there are many different kinds of folks there. Jesus called his disciples from all walks of life. I may sit by felons or drug addicts on Sunday but am I any better if I am not-I have my own "legal" addictions and working for a corporation may be "legal" but doesn't mean it is any more moral than any place else. I'm certainly not casting stones. We are all broken. We need each other.
I agree to "Give to Ceasear's what is his and to God's what is God's." If they are in violation and a law is broken you can be rest assured that Amy and Crystal are trying to work with the city and their neighbors to alieve this situation.
When it comes to what is to be given to God, that is us taking care of each other.
God's work is bigger than a house. The love that it is in this house transcends the building. The Church is all of us working together. Zacchaeus House is church home in our hearts. It will continue no matter if it is on S. French Broad, another location, Pritchard Park, or a street corner. Its about people reaching out to each other mutually.
Very well said and so true. The divisiveness in our country only serves the govt who benefits from people not working together. There is nothing socialist in being kind to our fellow humans. It is a simple precept that all religions and beliefs urge their followers to make real in their lives by their actions. Thank you for your post.
Aaron

Pensacola, FL

#134 Mar 11, 2008
file this one in along with standard evil government practices. christian, buddhist, muslim whatever they are, these people did nothing wrong.
Amos Ortiz

New York, NY

#136 Mar 14, 2008
Whatever happen to,“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”?

Regards,

Rev. Amos Ortiz

www.tithedeception.blogspot.com
www.diezmodecepcion.blogspot.com
BuncCyBapt

Asheville, NC

#137 Mar 14, 2008
earthtrekker wrote:
This makes the City of Asheville look a lot like the People's Republic of China--raiding house churches. Next will be the City citing people for having a dinner party and praying before the meal, or for having a Bible study (or meditation gatherhing) in one's private home. Every Christian home is a small church, so shut them all down Asheville!!!!
Earthquacker, you're still a goofy jeezoid, I see. Neighbors complained about the high vehicle traffic, the clutter of so many people coming and going, and the noise. A church must comply with zoning laws. In a family neighborhood you can understand --- well, not you --- that a home is restricted for use in compliance with the neighborhood and can't be operated as a hospital, motel, church, or the like because of city ordinances.

Sorry you can't get that through your thick head.

Not that long ago the city had to stop a woman from operating motels, and weekend brothels, out of houses in single family home districts of the city. Did you whine about her too?
BuncCyBapt

Asheville, NC

#138 Mar 14, 2008
Amos Ortiz wrote:
Whatever happen to,“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”?
Regards,
Revved. Amos Ortiz
www.tithedecepton.blogspot.com
www.diezmodecepcon.blogspot.com
What ever happened to single-family neighborhood zoning? Moron.
Brian

Raleigh, NC

#139 Mar 14, 2008
The City of Asheville not only has a total disregard for property rights, it also doesn't apparently believe in the right of the people to worship God as they see fit. Maybe people of faith ought to imitate the Pilgrim founders of our nation and move elsewhere.
Deaconess Shelly Owen

Damascus, MD

#140 Mar 20, 2008
The Rev.'s Cantrell and Cook are friends of mine.(I've known Amy since 1992.) To read that they are standing up for God's people who don't have a voice or are invisible in our society doesn't surprise me a bit.(Amy and Chrystal--I would love to hear from you. I'm going to be at Lake J in August and would like to see you if you're around!!)
Praying for Shalom, Shelly (Deaconess1313@hotmail.com)
birdy

Fremont, CA

#141 Mar 31, 2008
omg.. i can't believe the ignorance i'm reading on this page.

they were not shut down because of religion or anything of the sort. they were shut down for violating building codes. no matter who or what they are, they have to follow the rules just like the rest of us.

why the ignorance? why make this into more than what it is? instead of all this whining, which im so sick of, donate your time to help them get into compliance so they may reopen.

this isn't about the constitution and religious rights. this is about a house-church not being above the law.

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