CLINTON (February 24, 2014) – Unity Bank has provided a $3.5 million loan to St. Thomas Syro-Malabar Catholic Church of Franklin Township, Somerset County, to fund the construction of a new 26,500-square-foot church to be located at 510 Elizabeth Ave. near the intersection of Weston Road. Unity has also agreed to make a $5,000 donation to the parish’s Brick-by-Brick fundraising campaign for the more than $6 million project.
“Unity Bank is committed to supporting the communities we serve and St. Thomas is growing by leaps and bounds,” said Unity Bank President & CEO James A. Hughes. “It’s very rewarding to be able to partner with a parish creating a facility that will benefit the community for many years to come. Supporting the fundraising effort is the least we could do and I am confident many other local businesses will join in the Brick-by-Brick campaign.”
The 10-acre site is presently under construction and will include an 11,000-square-foot church, 10,000-square-foot fellowship hall, mezzanine floor, meeting rooms and kitchen. There will be more than 200 parking spots. The property is a short distance from Colonial Park and Spooky Brook Golf Course.
“Our church started as a mission of 15 families in 2000 and we now have approximately 500 parishioners,” said St. Thomas Trustee Tom Perumpail. “The new church is a dream come true for our parish family and we are so thankful to Unity Bank for making this vision of the future a reality. Every single person we have worked with at Unity Bank has been focused on meeting our goals.”
The Syro-Malabar Church is an Apostolic Church in India. The local parish started 13 years ago with a monthly mass at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Milltown before renting a church in East Millstone in 2004 and starting weekly mass. Two years later St. Thomas acquired its current church and rectory buildings at 44 Livingston Ave.
The church has raised approximately 50 percent of its project fundraising goal of $2 million. For more information on the church’s fundraising effort, please call (908) 837-9484.