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Church Gifted Land on Busy Route 610, Considers Relocating

By Stephanie Tipple April 7, 2014 1:42 pm

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NORTH STAFFORD, Va. – The Ebenezer United Methodist Church in Stafford is currently considering the options for development of a property on Va. 610 in North Stafford they inherited last year. The church received the land after the passing of two congregation members, Mary Stuart and Frances Cloe.

“Mary Stuart and Frances Cloe were long time members of Ebenezer Church. As I understand it, their parents were some of the founding members of Ebenezer Church,” said Reverend Chris Bennett.

“We ultimately decided that after prayer and discussion, that if we’re gonna stay here, we want to be able to do what we can with where we are, and it made sense to sell the property,” added Bennett.

More to the Story: A list of FAQs compiled by the church about the Cloe property

The 45-acre property at 425 Garrisonville Road sits across from Dan’s Pharmacy, and Arby’s restaurant and a Radio Shack. “It is currently zoned as residential with a house sitting on it, but the church is considering the development of the land for commercial use, which would require approvals from the Stafford County Board of Supervisors.”

According to Bennett, the proceeds from the sale and development of the proper will help to fund ministry work and projects, as well as a potential scholarship program in the Cloe’s name.

“We want to honor the Cloe sisters, whether it’s setting up a scholarship or naming something after them,” Bennett said.

In order for the church to move forward with commercial development, they’ll need to get the rezoning approved, so the plan will have to go before the county’s Planning and Zoning Commission, be subject to public hearings, and ultimately be approved by the Board of Supervisors, according to Stafford County spokeswoman Shannon Howell.

While Ebenezer Church has not started on the paperwork for the rezoning, they are hopeful about the impact they can have on the community as a result of the land sale’s proceeds.

“We are excited about the opportunity this gives us to continue our ministry and blessing the community. We hope this will continue to give us the opportunity to serve the local habitat. We’re just thankful for the gift that the sisters gave us, and we want to make sure that whatever we do honors them,” Bennett said.

Ebenezer United Methodist Church dates back to before the Civil War. The church used to be located on Onville Road in North Stafford before moving to its current location on Embrey Mill Road in 1992. If Ebenezer decides to relocate to the more visible Cloe House property, it would sit about a mile away from its old location on Onville Road.

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