Dilapidated church still a focal point for Portland Mills

The deteriorating church in Portland Mills has long been a safety issue for the residents of the small village along state Route 949 but the situation's outcome may be long from over."I'm going to bring it up again at the next [county] planning meeting and I've questioned it a couple of times," said Richard Wittman, supervisor and chairman of Spring Creek Township's Board of Supervisors. "There are things that we can do that [county officials] may be able to help us with."Parishioners associated with Trinity United Methodist Church, located along South Broad Street in downtown Ridgway, seek to transport the bell at the Portland Mills church down to the borough."A gentleman went in, got the deed to the church and took it to the church in Ridgway, and asked them to remove the bell from the Portland Mills church and hang it in the Trinity church in Ridgway," Wittman said. "While I haven't seen the deed, it supposedly stipulates that the trustees, and there are only two or three left, are supposed to handle it. "My feeling is that until everyone can come up with a way to remove that church economically, the ball has to stay in place. This gentleman wants the bell out and Trinity will put a sign on there saying that this bell was from the Portland Mills church, and most of the people who went to that church go to Trinity now, that's what this is about."Pick up a copy of the Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011 edition of The Ridgway Record for more.