Grover Beach church wins another round

September 24, 2019


A San Luis Obispo County judge on Monday rebuked a motion to restrain parishioners from attending services at the Bethel Baptist Church on Newport Avenue while two groups battle over ownership of the property. [Cal Coast News]

Last fall, the Christian and Missionary Alliance (C&MA) entered into an agreement to sell the 57-year-old church and 3.1-acre lot valued at $2.4 million to $2.9 million to The 5 Cities Homeless Coalition. Proceeds of the sale were to go into the coffers of the C&MA, a group known for absorbing churches and then selling off their assets.

Members of the Bethel Baptist Church began battling the C&MA over ownership of the property in early 2019 when they were told that the church was being shuttered and sold because membership had declined. After parishioners changed the locks, secured title to the property and accused the C&MA of fraud, the C&MA sued for ownership of the church.

As part of the legal wranglings, C&MA’s attorney Michael Pick filed a motion to bar the parishioners from entering the church until the court determines the legal owner: the C&MA or the Bethel Baptist Church congregation.

In Court, Pick accused the parishioners of destroying church property, and said that they might burn it down. Pick said Pastor John Fleming had changed the locks, emptied the bank account, and filed a new grant deed, all without legal authority. Judge Ginger Garrett denied Pick’s motion.

Garrett suggested mediation, but both sides felt there was no room to negotiate. Pick then asked the judge to move the trial up to April 2020, to protect his clients from loosing their buyer.

Bethel Baptist Church potluck on Sunday

Earlier this month, The 5 Cities Homeless Coalition purchased a 3,855 square-foot property at 100 Fourth Street in Grover Beach, where they plan to conduct homeless services. Even so, the homeless coalition is still trying to buy the Bethel Baptist Church property to utilize for homeless housing.

One of the attorneys for the Bethel Baptist Church, Michael Haupt, told the court he plans to seek a summary judgement and agreed to a tentative trial date in April.

According to the C&MA lawsuit, as membership and finances declined, the church legally became under the governance and ownership of C&MA. Pick wants the court to compel Fleming to transfer legal title to C&MA, to eject the congregants from the property, to return of the bank account funds, and pay punitive damages and cost of the suit.

On the other side, Fleming and the Bethel Baptist Church Board said C&MA employees illegally transferred the church to the C&MA after they used church money to pay off their personal debts.


I actually reset my password just to log in and comment. This makes me absolutely nauseous with revulsion. My opinion regarding an organization that calls itself Christian yet behaves in such a morally abominable manner is tinged with negative emotions. Why you ask? It is as if we have forgotten who, what, and where we came from. As if we haven’t learned by now, it’s an energetic paradigm were in here. What are we actually? Are we just monsters in a fish tank hoping we can corner all our goods into one little section of the tank? It is indeed a spiritual battle, is it not? Does the truth not shine through all the religion, through all the propaganda, mindwash bullshit program of status quo? Deep down, we all know it.In other words, do these people really believe their own bs? Selling off a church from under the parishioners? Why not give someone the shirt off your back instead. No wonder Jesus had to take a 40 day break, nobody would listen. Not much has changed, eh?? What would good ol Jesus think about this shit show? You think he’d turn over a few tables, aye? Oops, pardon me, wrong side if the aisle. I better decide which side I’m on. Oh how the illusion deceives. Oh how blissful the gluttony, the ego, the materialism, the deception. No wonder I don’t have cable, the truth is hard enough.

Kathleen Stout

Morro Bay

Follower of Christ

Human Being

Child of the infinitely Mysterious Immutable One( just like everyone else)

One more thing, since that seems to be trending…. it’s okkkkk if you’re opinion of Love Thy Neighbor is different than mine, no big!

To the CWA or whatever the acronym for greed is these days, I’ve got some advice. Tell that thing to get behind you.

You can try to bullshit your way out in this plane, but best of luck in the next one. In Buddhism we elevate the enemy and abolish our ego. This prevents the continuation of contribution to, the destruction of all that is sacred in this world.


Shame, shame, shame on the Board of Directors of the 5CHC for not calling off the dogs and continuing with this.


How do you shame an organization, or anyone or anything, that is on the sidelines waiting for an outcome? Nowhere in the article, or anywhere else for that matter, does it state that 5CHC is an active participant in this typical christian fight, nor can it be found that they are somehow in cahoots with the Christian and Missionary Alliance. And if they were? Why would they buy another property to continue with their plans? Jeeez!

What this is about with some, one of them being you, is the continued war against the homeless community in SLO with the NIMBYism that is rampant in SLO. You want the “problem” solved but only if it’s done in someone else’s backyard and for free.


Oh, standby, America. The connection will be revealed soon enough.

The main question that comes up in this situation is the opposite of what you ask. Why extend the escrow that is so obviously tainted, dragging 5CHC’s name down in the process? What does 5CHC have to gain from extending it?

seeking truth

You are correct bishbubba, 5CHC and PSHH are chasing free tax payer money. Who they hurt and how they get it does not seem to matter to these self serving non profits. What good has 5CHC done with all of the millions of dollars of tax payer money? Nothing, They continue to ask for more money and more Real Estate. They learned this from PSHH. Peoples self help house Is a large Real Estate holding and property management Company that gets grant money under the belief that they are going to help the needy. They only help the greedy! This is a big time money grab and people are beginning to figure it out.


The more I study angelology and all of the sacred doctrines, the easier it is to recognize evil in the face.


The Great Deceiver