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Homeless Group Being Forced Out Of Ridgewood, Queens Church

August 31, 2018 - 3:04 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- A homeless group in Queens is being forced out by the church where it operates.

As WCBS 880’s Mack Rosenberg reported, the homeless population in Ridgewood, Queens has been getting food and emotional support from the independent All Saints American Old Catholic Community. The Rev. Mike Lopez has been in charge of the program, along with the Rev. Angel Lugo.

“There are probably about 30 street dwelling homeless persons who are very visible in Ridgewood,” said Lopez.

For the past five years, the organization has been using space at the Ridgewood Presbyterian Church. The church is home to several local community groups, such as an Alcoholics Anonymous group and a senior center.

The Rev. Victoria Moss, pastor of the Presbyterian Church, said it is in use 24/7.

But recently, All Saints’ relationship with the church turned sour, according to Moss. She said the group was interfering with others, and that drunken men showed up at all times of day – and were disruptive to the point where police had to be called on one occasion.

So the Presbyterian Church is giving All Saints the boot.

Lopez said what Moss described is not the image of his parish.

“You can't just have people coming in out of your space and interrupting things, I get that, but those incidences are very, very few and far between,” he said. “I think that it is being highlighted as much more of a major issue for them than it really is.”