Baptist church gets city’s OK to use former clinic

Standing in front of what is expected to become the new Ripon Baptist Church are, from left, Jon Rhine, the Rev. Joshua Sherman and T.J. Rogers.

Ripon Baptist Church took an important step closer last week Wednesday toward moving into a new, larger facility.

The Ripon Plan Commission unanimously approved a conditional-use permit that would enable the church to hold services at 655 W. Oshkosh St., formerly a medical clinic.

The permit is a requirement of the B-2 (business) zoning district in which the building sits. It’s a structure that has been empty for about the past three years.

Though the church does not yet own the building, it’s in the process of acquiring the one-story structure from Accurate Controls, which discovered before ever using the building that the space would be too constrictive for the growing company.

But for Ripon Baptist Church? It’s more space than the group ever could use.

“Our primary purpose is to have church services, use it the same way we’ve been using our [existing] facilities currently ...,” the Rev. Joshua Sherman said to the Plan Commission, adding that it’s open to other groups using the excess space. “We are overly blessed to have a facility that is much larger than what we need. We hope that at some point we can use the building for other purposes other than just a church. If there are other groups, clubs, organizations that could use the facility, we would be open to that as well.”

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