Friday, November 25, 2011

JNS BLOG EDITORIAL: Naming Names With The West Broadway Prayer Center Controversy...

Stock photo and blog post by John Hoff

Two Minneapolis television stations are reporting on the West Broadway Prayer Center (821 West Broadway) and how its operator, Jariland Spence, faces eviction for lack of money as a "serious buyer" waits in the wings to buy the building.

Click here for KARE story. And click here for Fox 9.

The KARE story mentions the landlord by name, one "Jack Reider." In contrast, Fox 9 practices an odd sort of censorship, and just mentions "the landlord" without naming him.

Turns out even KARE doesn't have the name exactly right, or more accurately the names (plural) of the landlords (plural). This blog will see to it there is a fully-informed public discussion regarding who owns that building...

The building at 821 West Broadway is owned by John L. Reider and Helen F. Reider. (John apparently goes by "Jack.") Their address is listed as 4150 Lake Rd., Robbinsdale, Minnesota.

Though it is often the role of this blog to dig up and expose information and engage in pointed criticism, this blog post about the Prayer Center should not be seen as a criticism of the Reiders. In fact, development of that part of West Broadway would be the answer to many prayers...the prayers of nearby residents who want to see that area turned around, and a prayer center operated on a frayed shoestring budget isn't the kind of development we have in mind.

There has, in fact, been a lot of talk...a lot of dreaming...about seeing high end restaurants opened on that block.

It is one thing for Spence's supporters to come up with enough money to pay back rent, as they apparently did before. But $142,000 is a very significant amount. Unless some reformed gang member who turned his life over to Jesus hears the Voice Of God and realizes God wants him to go dig up his major stash of ill-gotten money, and turn it over to Spence...

Then saving the Prayer Center with an influx of donations (again) is simply not going to happen.

The efforts of Spence supporters would be more productive if their goal would be finding Spence another space for the Prayer Center, hopefully not far from her current location so her clientele can find her easily.

Spence's public vow to be "carried" from the prayer center in an act of civil disobedience (compare and contrast with Romans 13:1) should be prayerfully reconsidered. Spence should ask herself what God wants and if she is following the Voice of God, or her own feelings and preferences. 


Anonymous said...

Hmmm, 4150 Lake Rd. could be in ROBBINSDALE, MN. Nice house. There is a 4150 Robinson Lake Rd in Wabashsa, MN...Never heard of a Robbinson, MN....

Anonymous said...

A google map query shows the address on Johnny's blog post to be located between Ely and Tower Minnesota - WAAAAAY up north. It is on a quaint little finger of Eagle Nest Lake Number Four.

Anonymous said...

Ah... but if you follow John Reider to Nordicland Properties LLC... then you do land at 4150 Lake Road, Robbinsdale, MN 55422...

Johnny Northside! said...

"Robbinson" was a typo. Of course it was supposed to be "Robbinsdale."

I've gone back and corrected, accordingly. Thank you for catching that and drawing it to my attention.

Anonymous said...

You should read the StarTribune story. I don't know why you are painting Jack Reider as such a villain. He has gone out of his way to help her, and she has failed to uphold her part of the bargain.
Business is business, and just because you preach doesn't mean you are immune from your financial obligations.
The guy has to pay the commercial property taxes and upkeep pf the building. She was evicted once and allowed to return.
Now the building has been sold and the new owners want her to move.
Looks like your just looking to dig up dirt where there isn't any.
If she can't raise the funds to buy the building...well..are you gonna send her the $143,000?

NoMi Passenger said...

Anon 9:57, I think you have read the blog post and comments wrong.

Johnny Northside is merely adding info to the story by naming the landlord(s) and opening a discussion. I believe if you read correctly you can probably pick up the implication that Johnny Northside feels that someone shouldn't be allowed to stay somewhere for free, and that he, personally, would rather see something else in that location.

If the Reiders are no longer the building owners there, and you have other info, you should share it here to make the story complete and accurate. It's pertinent information.

Johnny Northside! said...

I think the commenter needs to read twice before commenting once.

First of all, this blog post was published online BEFORE the Star Tribune story, so that story had no impact on this story. (If the print version of the Star Tribune story preceded the online posting, obviously I had no access to the print version of the story here in AFGHANISTAN)

Secondly, I am probably the ONLY media who is more sympathetic to the landlord, here, than Ms. Spence and the Prayer Center.

Like I said in the blog post above (READ CLOSELY BEFORE HITTING THE PUBLISH BUTTON ON YOUR COMMENTS) the building is better used for high end development and the prayer center should move.

Somewhere close by, sure, but they should move.

I'm glad the prayer center was there as long as it was, however, instead of some "front" business laundering drug money or some inconvenience store selling blunts and 40 oz. bottles of beer.

I do think, however, the real and full name of the landlord(s) and where they live should be part of this discussion, and I was perplexed by Fox 9's decision to not even name the landlord. That's the kind of bullshit move I would expect of the press in a country run by elitist oligarchs, not America.

Thank goodness for the blogosphere to set things right.

If Spence can miraculously come up with the money to buy the building, good for her. What a feel good story that would make at Christmastime.

But unless some major sugar daddy steps forward and puts up SIX FIGURES, it's just not going to happen.

Johnny Northside! said...

My apologies for inconsistent capitalization of "Prayer Center."

pattycake said...

I think these are the people that wanted to build that passive solar house on 6th street, at the top of my alley. (The guy that sprinkled salt down the alley to ward off evil). Hope you are safe and doing well. Hope to see you soon.

Johnny Northside! said...

They are the same folks. In fact, when I was on the Hawthorne Housing Committee, I asked for assurances and got them in the minutes of the meeting that the passive solar house WOULD NOT become a secondary prayer center.

Did they give up on the idea of ownership of that house or are they still moving forward with that? Do you know?

Don't worry, Pattycake, I am fine and learning many new tricks to bring to North Minneapolis.

The Hawthorne Hawkman said...

Since a passive-solar house in Hawthorne was brought up, I will comment on that aspect, in my capacity as Housing Director.

This woman was an applicant for a passive solar house that was being developed by a coalition of partners wanting to invest in the EcoVillage. That particular group hasn't coalesced in the way we'd have liked to see. Several of its members are still in discussion with Hawthorne about building a passive-solar house in or near the EcoVillage.

The gap between cost and market price is still too significant for us to proceed with construction at this time - regardless of who the buyer is. That gap can close one of several ways: the cost of materials comes down as technology improves, tax breaks and other government incentives make it easier on both the builder and the buyer, and finding more financial support from non-profits or sponsors.

I hope we will be ready to move forward on such a house in the next year or so, and we'll revisit who can and will buy it at that time.

Johnny Northside! said...

She struck me as a very nice lady.

I don't know how well the mainstream media are going to follow up on the Prayer Center story, so hopefully the network of North Minneapolis bloggers can stay on top of this.

Anonymous said...

Hey I was wondering if you ever got any more information on John Reider and his wife Helen Reider

Johnny Northside! said...

No, I don't have any follow up info. Sorry.

Johnny Northside! said...

There is, however, no more prayer center at that location.