Inside the church an Ohio family made its home

Judith Zeng

Lord, bless my residence.

A family of seven in Ohio is singing their praises for at last receiving the likelihood to change a neighborhood church into their residence. But it took divinely encouraged creative imagination to make the existing fixtures in this 1903 residence of worship do the job.

Pews grew to become seating in the dining and property-education rooms. The baptismal font — yeah that is now the kitchen area sink.

“To feel of all the lives that ended up remodeled in this metal tub presents you goosebumps,” business contractor Matt Gray, 38 — who together with his 39-12 months-old spouse Kristen bought the former Pleasant Hill Church of God in the village of Enjoyable Hill for $50,000 in late 2020 — informed SWNS of the latter fixture. “Now it is living a bit a lot less glamorous existence as our kitchen area sink, no matter we are energized that it could be salvaged and employed.”

The Grays, who share two sons and three daughters aged in between 8 and 15, spent five months turning the church into a home — but the journey to get wherever they are now dates again numerous yrs.

The family painted the church's exterior black.
The spouse and children painted the church’s exterior black.
Matt and Kristen Gray / SWNS
Inside, a baptismal font is used for a sink and former pews are now dining and schooling seats. There's even a slide that the family enjoys.
Within, a baptismal font is made use of for a sink and former pews are now dining and schooling seats. There’s even a slide that the loved ones enjoys.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS

In 2016, even though residing in the nearby metropolis of Troy, the family needed to go to be closer to the children’s then-university in Enjoyable Hill — and the mother and father did not want to cross as lots of occupied roadways to arrive.

“We listened to by way of the rumor mill that the church experienced land south of town and was looking to make a new facility,” stated Matt. “My incredibly creative, but a bit as well artistic wife, Kristen, came up with this strategy that was ridiculous at the time, still the strategy grew legs,” he additional of the designer who now teaches the young ones at dwelling.

It took some five years for the family to reach their goal of living in this former church.
It took some 5 years for the family members to access their intention of dwelling in this previous church.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS
There are now four bedrooms inside.
There are now four bedrooms inside of.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS

In just two weeks, the couple approached the church and pitched the plan of buying the creating. Conversations lasted a couple weeks, but the church eventually rejected the offer, saying it wasn’t the correct time.

In the meantime, the partner and spouse — hoping the church deal would materialize — accepted an give on their house, and then moved into a fixer-higher that they bought at auction. The church, nonetheless, remained on their minds.

“We assumed about it each and every day considering the fact that we first walked by way of it,” reported Kristen.

This bathroom comes complete with a soaking tub.
This lavatory will come total with a soaking tub.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS
The renovation took a total of five months, and even the kids took part in turning the space into their home.
The renovation took a total of five months, and even the young children took portion in turning the space into their house.
Matt and Kristen Gray / SWNS
The family not only has a home with curb appeal, but also one that they got to turn into their personal paradise.
The family not only has a house with control attraction, but also one that they bought to convert into their personalized paradise.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS

In 2020, and following two residence flips, the church achieved out to the family members to tell them construction began on their new household of worship and that they were being prepared to offer.

“I assume they really appreciated the idea and the point that the developing would now house a new goal and would not be torn down to develop a parking lot as formerly proposed,” explained Matt. “In a way that only God himself could orchestrate, the timing and money positioning of all of the higher than took place in a completely coordinated and completely timed way.”

Decorating started as quickly as possible. The couple upgraded the electrical and plumbing, put on a new steel roof and painted the exterior black. They even obtained the young ones included in planning their very own bedrooms, plus entertaining places this sort of as a craft area, a video game space, a tv place and examining regions. For kicks, there’s even a slide that zooms down from an higher mezzanine. As for that kitchen, it’s quite huge.

A living area where the family can relax.
A dwelling location where the spouse and children can take it easy.
Matt and Kristen Grey / SWNS

“We’ve by no means had a dwelling wherever all seven of us can cook dinner in the kitchen with each other but right here we can and we enjoy that so significantly,” mentioned Kristen.

There are now four bedrooms in sum, as properly as 3 comprehensive bathrooms and 3 powder rooms.

Meanwhile, the parents got a huge master suite with a wander-in shower and a soaking tub. Other benefits include a fitness center space and business office areas.

The family first approached the church in 2016 and offered to buy it. But the church at that point said a sale was too soon.
The family to start with approached the church in 2016 and available to buy it. But the church at that place claimed a sale was too shortly.
Matt and Kristen Gray / SWNS

Church ephemera nonetheless continue to be. A wood cross was “left behind” and a church attendance board is now in the bell tower.

Regardless of the building now serving as the family’s dwelling, they continue to want the local community to use it for bible research and a food items financial institution.

“This little town has a enormous heart complete of awesome people today, we simply test to maintain up our conclude of that deal and do factors the right way,” claimed Matt.

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