Whitehall church hopes to open doors to St. Paul’s children
St. Paul’s Child Care Center, 417 Howertown Road, Catasauqua, and Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church, 3355 MacArthur Road, Whitehall, have reached an agreement so the day care service can operate from the township church.
The original closing for the Catasauqua child care center was scheduled for July 26, but that date changed to Aug. 9.
St. Paul’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, which housed the day care center, was bought by an outside group, the Al Mustafa Center. The final church service for the St. Paul’s congregation was June 2.
The agreement requires that Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church get an expanded permit from the township. The matter was on the zoning hearing board docket for July 16, but the session extended to 10 p.m. and was concluded before the church’s request.
According to Mike Miller, president of church council for Faith Evangelical Lutheran, the church’s request is at the top of the agenda for the next zoning hearing board meeting, scheduled for Aug. 20. Miller said he does not foresee a problem with the request.
“We spent money to go before the board, but we don’t know why this is necessary. We have a facility operating here now,” he said.
The existing program is Petite Scholars, out of Coplay.
“These are school-age students. During the summer, we have about 30 who stay in the program,” Miller said. “The new St. Paul’s people will need nursery care also. That’s why we are in front of the board.”
The groups can be easily split, and the church has plenty of room to support more children of all ages, it was reported. The school-aged children will have room on the lower level.
The delay has St. Paul’s nursery school parents on edge. There is a potential unknown gap between the latest closing date for St. Paul’s and the day the zoning may be approved.
According to Miller, the church is ready to go and can accept students as soon as it gets the zoning approval.