Historic Sheridan structure to go from house of sin to church

SHERIDAN, Ind. (WISH) – A growing church group is looking to transform a historic house of sin into a house of worship.

For nearly 100 years, the building at 501 South Main Street has occupied downtown Sheridan.

The former Casey’s Bar is in need of repair. Despite this, Joshua Kennedy sees potential.

Kennedy is the pastor of Issachar Church, a group of believers that’s grown from eight to more than 50. Even with the signs of sin all around, Kennedy picked this place to be his new place of worship.

“I was like, ‘OK, Lord, you’re going to have to be involved in this one because in my own strength and my own power it’s not possible,’” Kennedy said.

It'll cost $80,000 to make repairs to an old bar into a church. (WISH Photo/Nick Natario)
Damage caused by years of neglect to Casey’s Bar. (WISH Photo/Nick Natario)

It won’t be easy. It’ll cost $80,000 to transform the building into a church and community center.

Kennedy said much of the money will go toward grinding the concrete floor to make it smooth.

Moving is nothing new for this group. Five years ago the church started in a storefront on Main Street in Sheridan, but they quickly grew out of the space. Recently, the group started to share space from another church, but Kennedy said he’d like to have his own.

“It is nice to have a place to call home,” Kennedy said. “Nobody likes to live in a hotel or a place that’s not theirs.”

Sheridan Historical Society officials say the building was constructed in the early 1900’s. Early records show it was used as a general store specializing in bicycles.

It later became a tavern. The structure’s rich history is why Kennedy sees so much value.

“There would be a lot of other buildings that would be easier to go to and take less work, but it doesn’t contribute to the downtown Sheridan as a whole, and that’s important,” Kennedy said.

Work won’t begin until this summer. Crews need warm temperatures to tackle the plastic roof.

The pastor hopes to have it transformed by this time next year. To learn more about the church, or the project, click here.

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