On Thursday the Pentecostal congregation led by his wife will be moving in.
Owned by the City of New Rochelle, empty and deteriorating, the church has been renovated for about $3 million from Rivera's foundation.
The deal was that the city would lease the building and then sell it for $1.
Refuge of Hope began in 2009 in the home of Mariano and Clara Rivera. A small group of individuals would meet for a time of prayer and sharing on a regular basis. This group quickly experienced growth as the needs of the attendees were being met. They felt the need to organize a local church that would not only present the message of salvation to its attendees, but also provide programs that would meet the needs of the less fortunate in the community.
In order to accomplish their mission, they quickly determined that they would need a more formal setting. In their efforts to expand, a beautiful, historic building formally known as North Avenue Presbyterian Church was acquired from the City of New Rochelle, New York. The building has already gained admittance to the National Register of Historic Places.