Christian Fellowship Center Reaches Settlement With Village of Canton


CANTON, NY – April 30, 2019 – At a special board meeting with Village Trustees last night, The Village of Canton reached a settlement with Christian Fellowship Center (CFC). The settlement will allow the Church to continue meeting at its property at 25 Court Street and require the Village to pay $60,000 in legal fees and damages, the majority of which will be paid by the Village through its insurance company.

“Our settlement offer for a modest amount of attorney’s fees and damages has been accepted by the Village of Canton,” said Sorin Leahu, an attorney for the Church. “We are grateful to Judge Lawrence E. Kahn for acting swiftly in this case, and are pleased that the congregation can now focus on its ministry.”

CFC previously offered to waive all legal fees and damages in a settlement proposal to the Village sent on February 18, but warned that it would seek fees and damages going forward if Canton refused to allow the Church use of its property. The Village rejected this initial offer.

In response to the settlement, Jamie Sinclair, pastor of CFC said, “We are very thankful to the Village for recognizing our right to use 25 Court Street as a church, and we are grateful for opportunities to make humble appeals to proper authorities. Although our civil right to worship in this building has been debated for months, the justice system has been faithful to this essential liberty. With this matter permanently resolved, we are eagerly exploring the best ways to use this building as we continue to proclaim the truth that there is forgiveness, hope, and life in Jesus Christ. We love our community and are optimistic about what the future holds for Canton and the North Country.”