The story, as told to me by a Waleska United Methodist Church minister:
Blanche Hagan requested a lunch meeting with the President of Reinhardt College (now University), Dr. Floyd Falany. During their lunch, Blanche told Dr. Falany she wished to donate money to build a church on Reinhardt’s campus.
Blanche already had plans for the architectural design of the chapel. In them, she had specifically designated a private Bride’s Room, to be included in the Narthex. This was important to her, and she shared this with President Falany.
Blanche Hagan donated several million dollars to Reinhardt College for this chapel.
And she established three scholarships for Reinhardt students:
• Blanche Hagan Scholarship for United Methodist Youth
• Hagan Scholarship for Dependent Children of United Methodist Ministers
• Blanche Hagan Ministerial Aid Award
Considering the designation of these scholarships, I can believe Blanche Hagan would not be happy with the eviction notice Reinhardt University served to Waleska United Methodist Church.
Waleska UMC has called Hagan Chapel “home”, for more than three decades. The Waleska UMC and congregation have been woven into Reinhardt’s history from the founding of the school. Until Blanche gifted the chapel to the school, the congregation met off campus, in the old Briarpatch Church; a building lacking central heat and air, and indoor plumbing. Blanche was aware of this and realized she had a way to help both the church and the school.
Please read below, the thoughts and suggestions of Scott Jacobs.
Reinhardt University puts money above church, and is trying to evict the United Methodist Church after 140 years.
Folks, I am writing this to ask anyone involved with Reinhardt University to contact the University. Reinhardt University, a Methodist affiliated college for 140 years, has hosted the Waleska United Methodist Church since the college was founded. The church used the old Briarpatch Church for 80 years, and then moved several years ago to the new chapel built by the University for use by both the University and the church.
Reinhardt has suddenly decided to charge the Methodist Church an unpayable rent and ground upkeep, far beyond the church’s financial means. The current pastor of the church wrote to the church that, “Chairman Ken White, writing on behalf of the Reinhardt Board of Trustees, has indicated that if we fail to sign the agreement by May 31, 2019, we will have until the end of July “to vacate the premises or the University will proceed with legal action.”
Reinhardt was established as a Methodist institution, and the Methodist Church has supported the college for over 100 years. Many students and faculty have been active members of the church. Eviction of the church is so short-sightedly greedy that it is difficult to believe.
If you are an alumn of Reinhardt, please contact them and express your disagreement. Time is short before the church is evicted by the Sheriff.