Memphis pastor accuses ministry network of putting profit before people as they decide to sell church

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The doors of a Memphis church in Frayser are now closed.

The pastor of One Church Memphis, Devante Hill, turned over the keys to the head of the Tennessee District Assembly of God, Terry Bailey, after the two could not agree about who would purchase the church.

Hill accused the Tennessee Assembly of God of putting profit before people. The pastor said he worked so hard to turn this church around and that he feels blindsided by the decision to contract the space to another church.

Hill said regardless of the outcome, people want the money they helped raise to save this church back after it was vandalized last year.

Related: Memphis church vandalized, damage sustained to be about $50,000, pastor says

“I submitted a contract to you for $130,000. $10,000 more than what you even asked me for. I submitted the bank records showing that we had been approved for the loan. It was a done deal,” Hill said.

Bailey responded, “You never submitted a contract offer until after I told you we had an offer from another church.”

Bailey told FOX13 that the offer Hill made was unsigned and the terms and conditions were unacceptable to Assembly of God’s executive board.

Hill said that’s not the main issue.

Back in September, FOX13 interviewed Hill after he said his church was vandalized. With the help of donations, One Church Memphis fixed more than what was vandalized. Some of the money went toward the roof.

Hill showed us a receipt totaling nearly $56,000 for everything.

“It’s your right to sell your property, you have every, every right as a business and for the church to do so, but to not refurbish the funds that the community has given to make this church happen, it’s just disappointing,” Hill said.

Hill showed photos of the renovations inside the church that helped feed the homeless, provide summer camps to children and food.

Bailey would not name the church they’re contracting with. He said the executive board will determine if people will get their refunds back. Their next meeting is April 14.