Point of Grace Church International will be moving its Sunday services and full-time Christian school into two, three-story buildings near the intersection of Powers Ferry and Roswell roads, just 3 miles away from its present location on Franklin Road.
“This facility will be a beacon for the community,” said Reginal Moss, the pastor of the church who closed on the sale of the buildings Wednesday.
The buildings were previously owned by Rube McMullan, who is a member of the Gateway Marietta Community Improvement District located along Franklin Road.
McMullan said the buildings were previously used by the Cobb Communications Services Board.
McMullan said the efforts made by church members in the area around Franklin Road, which has been characterized as a crime-ridden part of the city, made him agree to sell the building to the church.
“I spent about five minutes with (the pastor) and he had me from the word ‘go,’” McMullan said. “He is preaching a message that is so needed today in that area (of Franklin Road), and that is self-reliance.”
Moss said he often walks up and down Franklin Road to talk with people who need advice about bettering their lives.
“We’ve reached a couple of milestones out there (on Franklin Road), but we’ve got a whole lot of miles to go,” Moss said.
Moss told a story of one milestone he reached when he ran into two men on the road.
“They were two fellows up to no good, but I talked to them and preached to them and their lives were changed right there,” Moss said.
Moss said he was able to get the young men off the street that day and drive them back home after buying them dinner.
Before purchasing the new building, the church held its services at the Radisson Hotel on Parkway Place near the intersection of Franklin Road and the 120 Loop. Moss said the space in the new buildings, which total 25,000 square feet, is three times as big as the old one.
“Marietta will see a big difference by us being here,” Moss said.
Although the church is moving, Moss said he plans to grow his audience.
“We’re not going to leave them all alone out there on Franklin Road,” Moss said.
Moss said he holds street meetings along the road three times a week. The meetings are hosted by church members who give out free food and water and offer prayers for residents.
The church also has a full-time Christian school called Grace Academy, which has 21 students from kindergarten to eighth grade.
Marietta Councilman Johnny Walker said he has seen the church make progress in the area.
“(Moss has) done a world of good over there (on Franklin Road), and I think he’ll do a world of good here too,” Walker said.
The first service in the new location is planned for September, Moss said.