SUISUN CITY — The Edge Community Church may have left Suisun City for Fairfield, but leaders don’t want to leave the city behind for good.
The church opened a thrift shop three months ago to keep roots in Suisun City and to help fund a soup kitchen that organizers are working to open in downtown Fairfield in August.
The store also helps fund public events, such as movie nights in the park. The nonprofit, nondenominational church has been holding the events for the 20 months it has existed. The congregation has grown from about a dozen to nearly 200 people who meet weekly at 1101 Horizon Drive in Fairfield.
“We’re an organization big on reaching our community and to get out of that four-walled building concept,” said Cameron Williams, worship and arts pastor. “We’ve never stopped that, we’re just a church now. If it ever failed, we wouldn’t stop being in the community.”
Williams said thrift store business has picked up in the last month as advertising and signs alerted the public to the Sunset Avenue location. Williams said he and the Rev. Michael Wurz, another pastor at the church, will pick up items donated by the public or people can drop things off at the store.
“We’re out talking to people. We’re able to go where they are. We pretty much thrive off donations,” Williams said. “We’ve seen a huge dramatic growth. When you’re out and really living it, they want to be a part of it.”
Wurz said it was important to remain loyal to Suisun City.
“We started meeting in the community center and wanted to maintain a presence in the city,” he said. “We really lost the ability to be where people were.”
The store is one way the church can help fund what it calls the Restoration Project, Wurz said. He said The Edge is nearing in on a loan for a Broadway Street location to house the soup kitchen, and somewhere to serve the needy. In a time where many of his members don’t have a lot to give, the store fills that gap of funding, he said.
Wurz said those in need now have somewhere to go to make contact with the church, but those who shop at the store won’t be inundated with pressure to join.
“It’s not about a religion thing, we don’t bring that up when you come in the store. If you have a need and you can’t afford, we can help you,” Wurz said.
Reach Danny Bernardini at 427-6935 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/dbernardinidr.