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Riverside church's bold initiative: New apartments provide housing and services for the housing-insecure

St. Michael’s Riverside Episcopal Ministry Center opens 50-unit apartments for low-income families.

The affordable housing complex for at-risk families at St. Michael’s Ministry Center in Riverside.

St. Michael’s Riverside Episcopal Ministry Center hosted a grand opening celebration for the new St. Michael’s Apartments, which opened last earlier this year on the church’s property. The project, which sits next door to the church, opened 50 one-and two-bedroom apartment homes for low-income households.

Income requirement listed on the complex's website show that a one-bedroom apartment can be rented for as little as $444 per month. Resident services, provided by Mercy House and Riverside University Health Systems, focus on behavioral health and primary health issues, independent living skills, and employment.

Construction on the $19.7 million project began in 2021 in cooperation with Community Development Partners to provide permanent supportive housing for housing-insecure people in the community, where St. Michael’s has ministered since the mid-1950s.

After the celebration, Rev. Kelli Grace Kurtz of All Saints Episcopal Church shared, “may this be just the beginning of the diocesan-wide efforts to put affordable/accessible, supportive services, and dignified housing on our [church] campuses.”

Bishop John Harvey Taylor of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles has pledged that affordable housing will be built on 25% of the diocese’s church properties. A second project, at Church of the Blessed Sacrament, Placentia, is nearing completion.

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story misattributed a quote to Rev. Mary Crist.