The building where the Love and Charity Mission and Shelter used to operate remains dark even after the Touched By An Angel Network (TBAAN), a separate charity, took over the facility a few weeks ago.
Louise “Mother” Hunter, 83, ran the Love and Charity Mission and Shelter for 50 years, for 30 years out of the 1031 Douglas Avenue location. But she retired in May. When she left, Larry Love, her grandson, took over the building. Love, the CEO of TBAAN, is trying to open an outreach center and food bank for children in the area.
While Hunter is starting a new shelter at a different location for seniors, TBAAN is off to a rocky start. Hunter racked up a $14,000 electric bill with We Energies at the 1031 location. Disconnecting the service earlier this month, We Energies says TBAAN owes them the money because of the relationship. Earlier this month, We Energies officials told other media sources that they believe the two organizations are still connected, which is why Love hasn’t been able to get the electricity turned back on at the property.
Love and Charity used to operate a homeless shelter out of the building, but TBAAN doesn’t plan to run a homeless shelter.
“They (We Energies) said that I inherited this building, but that’s not true. Love & Charity has nothing to do with TBAAN,” Love said. ‘Yes, I’m her grandson, but we’ve got an entirely different mission and different boards.”
Donations Fall Short To Pay Electric Bill
Hunter has a big heart, but when donations to Love & Charity started to dry up she opted to continue to feed people rather than pay the bills, Love said.
“I was trying to pay,” Hunter said. “But it’s been hard for me….that was a big place with a big light bill. I did the best I could with what I had… I feel bad, but what can I do?”
Hunter believes Love is “a good boy” trying to help people. The lights are not on over at the old place and she feels bad about the situation. But she knows that he believes in God and he will show him the way.
“He saw how I depend on God,” Hunter said. “But right now, he just needs help.”
Hunter’s New Venture
Still, the bill remains a contentious point between Love and Hunter, who is working on opening a new shelter for seniors called Love & Charity House of Hope at 1331 Rapids Drive. Hunter has had that building for a year and a half, but she just moved out of the 1031 Douglas Avenue location to the Rapids Drive house a month and a half ago.
In the meantime,she is still focused on helping people through a new venture she calls Love & Charity House of Hope, a shelter for senior citizens. The home has four bedrooms. No one is there yet. But at 83-years-old she said she just can’t let go of the idea that her purpose is to help people.
“Right now I can’t do nothing but offer a plate of cookies and Bible Study,” she said. “I still feel bad, but there are seniors here that need help and we’ve got to do something.”
Right now Love is cleaning up the property. People still drop off food and clothing thinking that Love and Charity are still open. He tells them it isn’t, but items still find their way to his doorstep.
Love plans to ask his board about what direction he should take: Focus on TBAAN or pay Love & Charity’s bill? But he’s leaning towards raising money for TBAAN because as much as he’d like to help out his grandmother, he wants to focus on TBAAN and help the children in the community.
“We’re separate,” Love said. “My problem is that if Love & Charity doesn’t take responsibility for the bill and we raise money for it, then we’re not going to be able to prove to the community that we are separate and that could hurt us in raising money for the building.”
The board is expected to meet this weekend.