Oct 23, 2016

Jehovah’s Witnesses fold in Port Dover

Monte Sonnenberg
Simcoe Reformer
October 21, 2016

The Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses on Blue Line Road in Port Dover is for sale. The remaining members of the congregation were dispersed to neighbouring congregations late last year. 

PORT DOVER - The Port Dover congregation of the Jehovah’s Witnesses is no more.

The 20 or so members remaining in the congregation were dispersed to congregations in Simcoe, Waterford and Hagersville late last year.

This week, “For Sale” signs were posted on the two-acre property on Blue Line Road between St. John’s Road and Highway 6.

Jim Henderson of Port Dover, an elder in the faith, said the Port Dover congregation had about 80 members several years ago. The numbers dwindled in recent years as younger families moved to other communities.

“This move had nothing to do with the property,” Henderson said Friday. “The building was very well maintained. This move happened because a lot of members moved to look after older family members.”

Henderson says all concerned are sorry to see the property go. However, he pointed out that the new members in Simcoe, Waterford and Hagersville have fortified these congregations “not only spiritually but monetarily as well.”

“We hope the building will be put to good use,” he said.

The former Kingdom Hall started out as a two-room schoolhouse. The Witnesses bought the property in 1980.

Coldwell Banker Coastline Realty in Port Dover has the listing. The asking price is $349,000.

The interior of the 2,500-square-foot building was renovated in 2012. Washrooms were remodelled in 2015. A new well was drilled this year.

Henderson isn’t sure how proceeds from the sale will be handled. However, Coldwell Banker literature lists the seller as “an international charity.” More specifically, the vendor is described elsewhere as “Trustees for the Port Dover congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses.”

The property is zoned “Rural Institutional.” Permitted uses include residential, animal hospital, cemetery, crematorium, day care centre, place of worship and private club. There is parking for 26 vehicles.

For taxation purposes, the assessed value of the property is $256,000.


No comments: