Controversial Harlem church fends off foreclosure sale

Judge issues temporary halt to public auction

Atlah Worldwide Church at 36 West 123rd Street in Harlem
Atlah Worldwide Church at 36 West 123rd Street in Harlem

The controversial Atlah Worldwide Church in Harlem temporarily staved off foreclosure.

The church at 36 West 123rd Street, near Lenox Avenue, was slated to go up for public auction next week for owing $1 million to creditors, including unpaid water and sewage bills.

But New York State Supreme Court Judge Barbara Jaffe halted the scheduled public foreclosure auction with a temporary restraining order.

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Atlah is known for its anti-gay and anti-Obama messages on its billboard. When the church went up for sale, LGBT groups such as River of Living Waters Ministries raised money to buy it, according to DNAinfo.

The church’s pastor James Manning posted a YouTube video exalting the order, DNAinfo reported. On the video, his lawyer, Stuart Shaw, said, “What that means in effect is that pending the fuller hearing on this matter on April 21 there will be no foreclosure action.”

“We’re a church and we’re tax exempt,” Manning, who supports Donald Trump, told the Daily News in January. “We are exempt from paying taxes, and that includes water and sewage bills.” [DNAinfo]Dusica Sue Malesevic