Diocese of Toledo announces the proposed sale of corporately owned low-income housing
After a comprehensive review of the structure, finances, and evangelical efforts of the Diocese of Toledo, Bishop Daniel Thomas announced today that the Diocese is seeking to sell the seven (7) low-income housing sites located in Toledo and Fremont, Ohio that are collectively known as the MAREDA Properties (the name of the civil corporation that owns five of the seven locations: MAREDA, Inc.).
- Doves Manor, 1040 Brookview Dr., Toledo, Ohio (50 units; restricted to residents age 62 years or older)
- Madonna Homes, 722 North Huron St., Toledo, Ohio (171 units; restricted to residents age 62 years or older)
- Michaelmas Manor, 3250 Schneider Rd., Toledo, Ohio (94 units; restricted to residents age 62 years or older and those who are disabled)
- Moody Manor, 2293 ½ Kent St., Toledo, Ohio (119 units of varied sizes; single to multi-person)
- The Plaza, 2520 Monroe St., Toledo, Ohio (160 units; restricted to residents age 62 years or older)
- Regina Manor, 3731 North Erie St., Toledo, Ohio (180 units of varied sizes; single to multi-person)
- Delaware Acres, 707 South Buchanan St., Fremont, Ohio (68 units of varied sizes; single to multi-person)
The review, which was started in early 2015, had, and continues to have as its goal, the identification of areas where the Diocese could focus and increase its spiritual mission, as well as its efficiency and effectiveness.
"Based on the findings," said Bishop Thomas, "it became clear that the complexities of sponsoring and overseeing government-funded housing, and resources necessary to manage the properties in a manner fitting to the people who call those locations home left the local church without the competence to continue this level of corporate governance."
He added, "Many things have changed since this apostolate was started in 1969. These changes have made it nearly impossible for the Church to carry out her spiritual mission of charity and pastoral care of people, which Pope Francis so often reminds the world is the primary focus for the Church."
The decision to sell the low-income housing properties was reviewed and unanimously supported by the Board of Trustees, as well as by the College of Consultors and Finance Council of the Diocese of Toledo. This Board, which was originally charged with the day-to-day management of the properties, has relied on Vistula Management Company of Toledo for many years to manage the 841 housing units. When making the decision, it was imperative that assurances would be given in any sale that low-income housing would continue to be provided for those who need it and the sale of the property would enable the Church to exercise her spiritual mission in a way that brings the Good News of Jesus Christ to the community.
Federal law requires any buyer to maintain the properties largely as low-income housing. "The majority of the individuals who live in these units do not know that the Catholic Church has any involvement in providing their housing. This is even greater evidence that, under current restrictions, the Diocese of Toledo has not been able to effectively carry out the evangelical mission of the Church in these locations," stated Bishop Thomas. "At this moment in the history of the Diocese, our concentration has to be on the spiritual mission of the Church and the pastoral care of persons, not on being an unknown landlord who simply owns the property."
The properties have recently been placed with a marketing firm. Since being placed with the firm, no purchase offers have been received.