of Susanna Wesley House, Inc.
1919 - The Women's Home Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church opened a home for working girls in a rented house on West Fayette Street called Wo-Ho-Mis Lodge.
1921 - The property at 609 Park Avenue was purchased for $17,000 in fee.
1922 - The home was formally opened.
1925 - The house at 607 was purchased.
1928 - The Women's Home Missionary Society of the Methodist Protestant Church opened a Business Girls' Home in a rented house at 1009 St. Paul Street.
1930 - The Business Girls' Home bought 810 St. Paul Street and changed the name to Meth-Pro-Home.
1940 - The three branches of Methodism became unified into one Methodist Church.
1956 - The Wo-Ho-Mis and Meth-Pro facilities were merged and the Meth-Pro Home sold. The new name became The Business Girls' Lodge of the Methodist Church.
1968 -The Evangelical United Brethren and the Methodist Church merged.
1983 - The name of the lodge was changed to Park Avenue Lodge.
1986 - Residence at the lodge was declining and an agreement was forged with Associated Catholic Charities to accept 12 homeless women and support staff each day from 4 p.m. until 9 a.m. The women and staff returned to My Sister's Place
during the day.
1993 - On April 3rd someone doused the living room at 609 with a fammable substance and set it on fire about 2 a.m. Three women lost their lives in the fire and both homes were extremely damaged. One of the homeless women staying in the lodge for the night was later charged with arson. The news media erroneously reported the property as My Sister's Lodge and donations were directed to My Sister's Place. All donations were used to enhance the program at My Sister's Place and Park Avenue Lodge was left with a burned out building that had been inadequately insured.
1995 - The Board of Directors of Park Avenue Lodge embarked on a new mission for 609 Park Avenue to make it a transitional home for homeless women and their children. Using the insurance money left from securing the two buildings and borrowing $50,000 from the Baltimore - Washington Conference, work began. The new mission was named Susanna Wesley House, Inc.
1997 - Dr. Jonna-Lynn Mandelbaum, a former missionary to Mozambique and Zimbabwe, was hired as director.
1999 - Susanna Wesley Hosue, Inc. opened in January with room for 15 mother and their children. Children shared rooms with the mothers and all meals were prepared by a paid staff. Before and after school care was provided for working mothers.
2000 - In April, Dr. Mandelbaum was forced to retire due to serious health problems. Rev. Paul Murray, a Pentecostal minister was hired in July.
2001 - Rev. Murray resigned in April as the Board began to set up a new accounting system. It was soon discovered that he had not only taken funds but had not submitted grants as he had told the Board. The Board had not choice but to relocate the residents and close the house. Dialogue began with several organizations on some type of partnership to reopen the house.
2002 - The Board of Susanna Wesley House at the urging of Dr. Brenda Blom of the University of Maryland Law School brought charges against the Rev. Murray. Most of the funds were recovered by the bond insurance.
2003 - An agreement was signed with the Women's Housing Coalition to reopen Susanna Wesley House. It was agreed to reconfigure the house to provide 9 living units with most units having a private bath and two bedrooms. Kitchens are shared in some units. The Board of Susanna Wesley House, Inc. raised over $400,000 in grants, gifts and donations to complete the renovations. The Women's Housing Coalition provided furniture for most of the building. The Rev. Murray came to trial and was convicted.
2004 - The newly renovated Susanna Wesley House opened and was quickly filled to capacity.
2006 - SWH and Women's Housing Coalition extended the agreement for another two years. The house is always full.