Payne AME to dedicate new building; Outreach center marks expansion of service


Payne Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Church, committed to social ministry in the Madison Park neighborhood, is expanding its service to the community as it opens its third outreach building tomorrow.

The congregation, at 1714 Madison Ave., will hold an 11 a.m. worship service to celebrate its 102nd anniversary. After unveiling a sign in front of the church proclaiming the street "Payne Memorial Way," the congregation will march three blocks to the new outreach building at 1505 Eutaw Place.

The dedication of the Anvil Office Building is scheduled to begin at 3: 30 p.m. The anvil, representing a tool to break the chains of oppression hindering blacks, is an important symbol for the AME church, which began in the late 1700s in a renovated blacksmith's shop in Philadelphia.

The building will join two others that form the campuses of Payne Memorial Outreach Inc., which is dedicated to job training, economic development, day care, education and other social service programs.

Payne Memorial AME acquired the Eutaw Place building, which was an office complex, in February 1999. The building also has an auditorium, a kitchen and banquet facilities.

Part of the building will be leased to Payne Memorial Outreach Inc. for its Intensive Job Service Program. The group is using $1.5 million in state funds to provide job training and placement for welfare recipients in food service, hospitality, geriatric assistance and general office work.

The Anvil Office Building will also house the Custom Cuisine Culinary Arts Ministry, a program that trains workers for the restaurant industry; Sisters Together and Reaching, a nonprofit organization that assists women with HIV/AIDS and their families; the Rebirth Boutique, which provides professional-looking clothing to clients who are entering the work force; and space for adult education classes and Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

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