Minister Admits Shelter Violates City Ordinance

1 decade 2 years 5 months ago Friday, December 08 2006 Dec 8, 2006 Friday, December 08, 2006 7:49:09 PM CST December 08, 2006 in News
Source: (Copyright 2007 The Associated Press All Rights Reserved.)
SPRINGFIELD - A minister who is housing homeless people at a Springfield retail facility said he is choosing the work of God over the law of the land. The Rev. Larry Rice is director of the New-Life Evangelistic Center and Free Store. He clashed with city officials this week over more than a dozen homeless people housed in his building. Rice says he is following his calling despite acknowledging the arrangement violates city building codes. As temperatures dipped into the teens this week, the city put into effect an Extreme Cold Weather Shelter Plan. But there are only about 500 beds available in Springfield at three approved homeless shelters. Rice says those places are sending people to his makeshift shelter. Police have said they will not force the homeless to the street.

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