Much of the land across from the front of the hotel and around Lake Heritage continued to be leveled. Piles of old buildings, trees, and many other things that were part of PTL were burned; at times it actually looked as though a bomb had been dropped on the property.
February: On location in Blue Eye, Mo., Jim Bakker televised the dedication of the land for his new ministry center, Morningside. This new retreat/refuge center was 30 miles south of Branson. As he did at Heritage USA, Jim put several small metal plates inscribed with the Scripture from Isaiah 54:17: “No Weapon formed against you shall proper,” in the foundation of the first building.
This 600-acres of land, owned and being developed by his friend Jerry Crawford, was to be completed within a few years. The center would house a new TV studio, church, homes, condominiums, plus a large enclosed shopping area with a Main Street similar to that of Heritage USA. There was an air of hope as staff and family gathered with Jim Bakker and Jerry Crawford to dedicate the land.
On the 13th, Tammy Faye was getting worse as the tumor on her lung grew larger. It was suggested by one of her doctors that she get into a Hospice program. It was at this time that Rick and I mailed her the angelic Precious Moments Figurine, “No Tears Past the Gate.” We had held onto it since 1987, and now we could only hope that we made the right decision.
March: Coulston Enterprises began construction of four one-story modestly sized industrial buildings just over the railroad tracks on one of the new roads that wound its way to the new bridge to Pineville, which was scheduled for completion by September.
Earl Coulston partially dismantled the Amphitheatre. Eventually it was to be enclosed and remodeled to make more room for seating.
On the 13th, Tammy Faye appeared on the Larry King Show. This time she weighed only 97 pounds and was obviously failing from the tumor that was on her lung. Tammy Faye spoke in a way that sent signals she was saying good-bye. She wasn’t giving up, just telling the facts that her cancer was back. Despite this bad news, she was planning to go back on TV to host a cooking show in May.
April: During this time the pastel colored whimsical facades on the outside of the Main Street Shops at Heritage USA were dismantled and replaced with a more streamlined look.
Tammy Faye appeared on the Trinity Broadcasting Network’s Spring Telethon hosted by Jan Crouch. This was the first time Jan Crouch and Tammy Faye had seen each other in several years. Their differences of the past were put to rest when Tammy Faye said to Jan, “It doesn’t matter anymore.” They embraced and there was a pleasant peace that filled the studio. Tammy ministered to the audience while having a very difficult time talking. She was still in Stage 4 of lung cancer. A global prayer was initiated for her as those on the stage anointed her with oil and prayed over her to be healed.
May: On the 31st, Earl & Sabrina Coulston gave the homeowners of Regent Park permission to use the TV Studio for their Homeowners Meeting.
This was the first homeowners meeting held since 2003. Among the unresolved issues was the new roadway into Pineville.
Regent Parkway had become in much disrepair because of all the construction traffic going in and out of the community. Residents did not want to foot the bill for the road repairs before it was given over to the county. The meeting became so out of hand that it made the front page of The Herald with the following headline: “Regent Park meeting turns sour” (Emotions reach fever pitch at Fort Mill neighborhood gathering)
Earl Coulston told the homeowners that they would have to find some other place to meet next time. The homeowners had to elect a new board of directors as the old ones were nowhere to be found. There were also questions as to where each homeowners’ annual dues had been spent since 2003.
June: A web site was formed by a few of the residents to enable homeowners in Regent Park to share their concerns. Within a few days there were residents who stated their views and real apprehension over what was happening to the neighborhood on the web site. The residents of the newer sections paid an annual $400 homeowners association fee, but they had not been given a report as to where their money was spent since 2003. It was the Malaysians who ultimately had control over who ran this association. The homeowners now wanted a new board and control over how their dues were spent. The old board suddenly quit and was not available for comment.
On the 7th, the Fort Mill Times ran a similar article titled, Steamed Regent Park residents come to a boil… An excerpt from the article written by Ayesha McAdams-Mahmoud, “Not one board member – non-Regent Park residents and employees of developer Regent Carolina Corp.- attended. Instead, they attempted to resign through a letter and didn’t state the reason.
Residents couldn’t have elected a new board of directors if they wanted to because there weren’t enough homeowners present to do so legally. According to the association’s by-laws, they needed 235 homeowners and only 161 were represented among the more than 200 in attendance…”
On the 19th, the Regent Park residents met again, at a motel, but this time there was more than enough people to elect a new board of directors and start addressing the issues that needed to be resolved. Lawyers and an outside management firm were also being hired.
On the 22nd, Tammy Faye put out an update on her health. An excerpt from of her writing:
“Hello my Friends,
I have been reading your e-mails and receiving such comfort from them daily. Thank you for your continued prayers on my behalf. You cannot know how much that means to me. I think about you often and try to picture your faces.
I want to say thank you for all the wonderful gifts you have sent to me. Angels, shawls (which I love because I feel cold so much of the time having lost so much weight). I’m staying at a firm 95lbs. But, that is not so bad considering I’m just 4’ 11” tall. I just look kinda boney. Ha! Ha! I love all the butterflies you’ve sent and all the good vitamins, the drinks, all the cancer information, the books. Everything brings a feeling of love with it. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
I am still on chemo. I take a chemo pill for a week then I’m off a week. Just about the time I start feeling better and my energy is coming back it’s time to take that pill again. I start again tomorrow. However, I received a great report from the doctor two weeks ago. My cancer marker has gone from 48 to 40. I am grateful to God for good news. But, I KNOW I serve a 100% God and 40 isn’t good enough for Him…”
On the 25th, Sabrina Coulston opened the Upper Room to the public. She announced that it would be open from 9 AM – 5 PM during the week. She planned to have it staffed by volunteers.
July: MorningStar Fellowship Church closed for the month for its yearly sabbatical.
On the 27th, The Herald compiled a front page story with the following headlines: EMERALD LAKES: Lots selling fast in northern York County community…Developers draw up ambitious plan for area.
There were pictures on the front page of different locations on the grounds of Heritage USA and of the new clubhouse being built near the timeshares. The write up revealed Earl Coulston’s plans for the property.
The story began with the following paragraph:
“It’s not Regent Park, though it does neighbor that residential area. And please don’t call it the former Heritage USA or PTL site. From here on out, it’s Emerald Lakes, and developers are planning a rebirth of the1,000 acre property beginning in late September when a bridge will open connecting the development to Pineville, N.C…”
The article went on to report that with the new bridge nearing completion, Coulston Enterprises was hoping for a steady stream of cars to drive through each day affording a boost in business for restaurants and retail stores to land at Emerald Lakes. Hundreds of homes were slated to be constructed as well as a park, a few ball fields, and a walking trail.
August: On the 14th, The Herald ran another front-page story having the following headlines:
Turning a scar into a Blessing… First changes to former Heritage USA near completion…
The full article, written by Ayesha McAdams-Mahmoud, read as follows:
MorningStar Fellowship Church soon will unveil the first of its completed restoration projects on the 52-acre Heritage International Ministries property, formerly a corner of Heritage USA.
Church founder Rick Joyner is restoring the property, which was owned and operated by Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s Praise the Lord ministry in the 1980s. He bought the property from developer Earl Coulston in 2004.
By Sept.1, Joyner expects to have restored all 345 rooms, suites, and office spaces of the
Grand Hotel and finished the stores of the indoor market called Main Street.
The facility restorations will coincide with Coulston Enterprise’s expansion of Regent Parkway as a shortcut linking U.S. 21 to Pineville. Coulston is developing 1,000 acres of former PTL property into single-family home developments with retail businesses, restaurants, and recreation.
Joyner, who calls Coulston a friend, hopes the restorations will attract visitors to the developments. “We realize what a scar this property has been on the community,” Joyner said. “We want it to be a real positive blessing to the community.”
Most of the Grand’s hotel rooms will host attendees of the church’s monthly Christian conferences, while some rooms have been converted into apartments and larger suites for more permanent guests.
MorningStar Fellowship Church now holds weekly church services in the former lobby of the hotel.
The restored shops on Main Street won’t sell clothes as they did in the PTL days, Joyner said. Instead, they’ll be converted into Christian-oriented bookstores, art galleries, and coffee shops. On the outside, a more business-like, all brick facade has replaced the colorful, Disney-like design of the PTL days.
Other upgrades on the way:
The conference center, with its dome-shaped roofs, should be finished in January and available for other ministries use. Joyner says restoration of the incomplete 21-story condominium tower could begin as soon as possible.
MorningStar conference administrator Trevor Tiessen said engineers have examined the building and said previous claims that it was unstable are false. They are working with York County officials for permits and re-certifications, he said.
As for the castle-like building that used to be a restaurant, Joyner wants to turn that into a day-care facility, or a “little Narnia” as Joyner calls it.
Other Ministries arriving. Multiple ministries have been attracted to the former PTL property and are leasing other facilities on the land some are calling “a place of refuge.”
In the former Wagon Wheel restaurant, a 24-hour “House of Prayer” has been set up by The Cause ministry. It operates in collaboration with the Zadok House of Prayer.
“If you came in at 10 in the morning or 2 in the morning, there will be 10 to 15 people around the room praying,” Bennet said. “In a given day, there are probably 100 to 120 people coming in and out.”
Sixty full-time Zadok missionaries, many between the ages of 18 and 24, set up shop earlier this year and commit six hours a day each to praying. Bennet said the Lord led them to this place.
Sabrina Coulston operates the Flames of Fire ministry on 42 acres of property belonging to Coulston Enterprise.
Joyner says other ministries from across the nation are interested in collaborating with MorningStar as it renovates the property, despite its tenuous past.
“I think a lot of things that happened here helped to wake up and mature a lot of modern ministries,” Joyner said. “We hope this will be not only a ministry to the community, but a very positive reflection of the state of modern ministry.”
In mid-month, Tammy Faye was placed on a Hospice Program.
On the 27th, Rick Joyner, during a Sunday 9:00 AM service, spoke about how a Christian’s hope should not be in the world, and a true sojourner should have a light hold on the things of the world. Stating, “How do we know we’re not fixing this place up just to give to some other ministry? If it’s the will of God, I want to do that because on that Judgment Day it’s not going to be ‘You were the Manager of Heritage,’ or whatever. It’s going to be did we do His will? We hold everything lightly and take it to the cross every day. Lord, this is yours not ours.”
September: Tammy Faye’s health continued to worsen. Tammy Sue moved in with her to help. Roe Messner, Tammy Faye’s husband, was having a difficult time with his emotions as were her children.
Rick Joyner announced that Main Street and the Conference Center openings had been pushed back because of a permit related issue.
October: Simultaneously to Rick Joyner’s annual Harvest Conference, from the 5th-11th, the following article appeared in our local paper.
Regent Park Corp. owes IRS
$13.2 million federal tax lien worries Fort Mill homeowners, by Ayesha McAdams-Mahmoud.
The Herald – Updated 10/6/06
FORT MILL — A property investment firm with major holdings in the Regent Park area owes millions of dollars in income taxes to the federal government.
According to a lien filed on Aug. 4 by the Internal Revenue Service, Regent Park Corp. owes $13.2 million in corporate federal income taxes for periods ending in 1998 and 1999.
Neighbors are concerned because the corporation owns properties and common areas in Regent Park, including the Regent Park Golf Club, the community swimming pool and private roads, such as Regent Parkway. The corporation also operates golf courses in Texas, Minnesota and Iowa, according to York County tax records.
A federal tax lien is usually the second step in a collections process, said Mark Hanson, South Carolina spokesman for the IRS. The IRS first sent a notice and demand for payments but filed the lien 10 days later because the company failed to respond or refused to pay its debt. The lien also notifies potential creditors of the fiscal state of the corporation, he said.
Regent Carolina Corp. officials could not be reached for comment. Hanson, citing federal privacy and disclosure regulations, declined to discuss specific tax matters relating to the corporation.
“This creates grave concerns as to the willingness or the ability of the Regent Park Corporation to fulfill its obligations to the homeowners,” said Tim Sellers, attorney for the Regent Park Homeowners Association.
In recent years, neighbors of the 800-home community off U.S. 21 have accused the corporation of limiting their access to financial records and neglecting the maintenance of common areas such as Regent Parkway, which the county estimated needs about $400,000 of repairs to be brought up to standards.
In June, neighbors voted for control of the community’s finances by electing a resident-based homeowners association for the first time in the community’s history.
They soon began talks with executives from the corporation and requested an audit of the corporation’s financial records and copies of property easements and cost-sharing agreements — so they could identify how many properties were in the community to collect dues.
But recently, after months of cordial talks, members of the corporation have refused to meet with representatives from the homeowners association, Sellers said.
Sellers said the corporation has not supplied papers that would transfer responsibility for properties to the homeowners association, despite his requests. He added, “I am now talking to the board about the impact of this filing and how we should best proceed.”
Regent Park Corp. is a subsidiary of Regent Corp., which is associated with Malayan United Industries Berhad.
On the 11th, Jim Bakker announced, on his show, that he would be at Heritage USA for Rick Joyner’s New Years Conference. He also said he would be dedicating the reopening of Main Street and the Conference Center inside the Heritage Grand Hotel.
On the 12th, Tammy Faye wrote the following letter on her web-site:
I just want to thank you all for your prayers, cards, letters, encouraging words, e-mails, and gifts. I’m doing ok. Have good days and some not so good. But I’m still hanging in there believing in the Lord for a complete healing.
This letter will be pretty short so please forgive me for not writing more. Just wanted to let you know I’m still here.
Please just keep lifting me up with your prayers for a miracle.
Love you all. God Bless You. Tammy Faye
On the 31st, Rick Joyner made another guest appearance on Jim Bakker’s Show.
November: On the 1st, Pastor Ron Lambright, the pastor whom Jim Bakker put in charge of his church after he left for Florida in the spring of 1989, started to hold services in the lower level of the Upper Room. Pastor Lambright’s other church was part of a larger parcel of land that was going to be developed for new homes. He then made an agreement with Sabrina Coulston and moved his congregation to the Upper Room. He was glad to be back in the Upper Room, where he had been a part of the pastoral team of the PTL Ministry.
On the 14th, a member of a group called, “Heritage USA” on Yahoo Groups, posted the following message:
There are a number of strongholds that have come in over time over the beloved Heritage U.S.A. site. I include them here for your prayer and much intercession so that together we can tear them down and the Lord be lifted up and glorified. The strongholds include:
• anti-Christ spirit
• greed • lying/deception
• killing, stealing, destruction
Many thanks and Love to you all. God Bless you.
On the 16th, Gospel singer, Nancy Harmon, whose friendship with Jim Bakker dated back 40 years, was Jim and Lori’s guest on the show. During this particular broadcast, called the “after show,” she made this statement, “Jim, I had a dream when you went to prison. I wrote and told you about it. The Lord showed me in that dream that your end would be greater than your beginning at Heritage USA.”
On the 17th, Rick Joyner again appeared on The New Jim Bakker Show. Shortly after, Jim’s name appeared on MorningStar’s web site stating he would be one of the guest speakers at the New Years Conference.
December: On the 6th, Jim Bakker brought his camera crew out to Morningside. He showed the steel beams going up over the new Main Street where he intended to have shops, restaurants, condos, a church, ministry school, and a TV studio.
During the early part of December, the Fort Mill Times ran the following article:
District eyes 2 school sites—- By Mac Banks
FORT MILL TOWNSHIP — The Fort Mill School District has identified two places it could build new schools.
One is located behind Nation Ford High School in Regent Park and is big enough for an elementary and middle school. The other site is near the corner of Doby’s Bridge Road and Holbrook Road, and could accommodate an elementary school site. The Regent Park schools could be open by 2008 and the other project by 2009, officials said at a meeting Monday night.
The land behind Nation Ford High School is about 54 acres and hosts Lakeview Stables. The district has preliminary permission from owner, Earl Coulston, developer of Regent Park, to do research about the site to see if it would be a good fit for two new schools.
“This is our best shot at making anything for 08,” said Jim Britton, project manager for Southern Management Group, which manages the district’s building program.
Officials with Coulston Enterprises said it would be a good fit to have a school located in Regent Park.
“The school would bring certain benefits for our development,” said Eric Greenway, manager for Nation Ford Properties, a Coulston company. “It is a positive situation for everyone.”
The other potential site for a new school is within the 1000 home Massey development near the corner of Doby’s Bridge and Holbrook Roads. In the past, the developers have said they would be willing to set aside land for a public school.
The next step is talking with the state’s departments of transportation and education. Both must agree the sites would be appropriate for schools.
Ford High School through the back of Regent Park and down toward the potential site.
Also, the future Southern Bypass could run near the potential Doby’s Bridge Road school site.
With the bypass, the school would have a better chance. Without it the question remains concerning what roads would support school traffic.
A study conducted by Southern Management Group predicts the school district would need to build at least 8 schools within the next 10 years to keep up with residential growth.
On the 13th, Tammy Faye wrote on her web site:
It’s little ole me. Just wanted to give you an update. So many of you have sent e-mails and cards with well wishes and notes of encouragement, which mean so much to me, thank you for keeping me in your thoughts and prayers…
Thanksgiving was uneventful this year – everybody behaved themselves. Had a wonderful time with my kids and grandkids. It is such a blessing to have my family here to spend time with me…
I am still believing in the Lord for a complete healing. Please keep me in your prayers. To all of you who have e-mailed me with prayer requests, I am keeping you in my prayers as well.
God bless you all. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone. Love, Tammy Faye
During the month, Revolution Church, pastored by Jim and Tammy’s son, Jamie Charles, was featured in a documentary released by the Sundance Channel. For the following six weeks Sundance ran a series on Jamie’s life and ministry. Now known as Jay Bakker, it was a revealing “behind the scenes” reality show about the challenges and struggles he faced since the fall of PTL. The series was named, “One Punk Under God…the Prodigal son of Jim and Tammy Faye.” Articles of the documentary appeared in the New Yorker, Vanity Fair, and he was a guest on Good Morning America. Jamie’s church is mainly for people who have given up on the main stream church.
On the 15th, Jamie appeared on CNN’s Larry King Live. He received phone calls of admiration from both Jim Bakker and Tammy Faye while on the air.
On the 20th, the Fort Mill Times ran a story by Jonathan Allen as follows:
FORT MILL —
Town council members are taking a wait-and-see approach to a recently announced proposal to annex a chunk of the former PTL property in Fort Mill.
The proposal came from developer Earl Coulston, who is building a community called Emerald Lakes near Regent Park. Up for consideration is a nearly 600-acre swath made up of the remnants of Jim Bakker’s Heritage USA, which Coulston purchased from Regent Carolina Corp. in 2004, according to Mike Scott, a Coulston Enterprise Management employee, and point man on the project.
Coulston hasn’t submitted an official annexation request yet, but the company recently approached Town Manager David Hudspeth about the possibility.
“They came to us and wanted to know what to do in order to annex.” Hudspeth said.
After Hudspeth told the council about the possible annexation during the last council meeting, the council members decided a cost/benefit analysis on the project would be a good idea and told Hudspeth to ask Coulston to pay approximately $11,000 to have the analysis done by a firm of the town’s choosing. The analysis was to be discussed at a meeting between Scott and town staff Tuesday morning.
“We think it will show it to be a definite money-maker for Fort Mill,” Scott said Monday. “But, we also need to see if it is a good fit for us.”
With up to 600 high-end homes and several commercial and industrial buildings planned, fire and police protection are big concerns for the company, Scott said.
“We would have to see if all the property would be a good fit, or just some of it-or none of it,” Scott said.
The company would likely know by the end of this week if it plans to pursue annexation, he said.
Meanwhile, most of the council members aren’t saying publicly how they feel about the proposal.
At the end of 2006:
- The Grand Hotel had approximately 350 rooms restored;
- The PTL Registration Office where The Cause was located was being refurbished;
- The Zadok House of Prayer moved to a larger building on the grounds
- The Amphitheatre remained in disrepair;
- The Barn Auditorium (the church) remained unfinished on the inside;
- The TV Studio had been completely restored;
- The bridge and new road leading to Pineville were nearing completion;
- The plans for the Towers were due into York County Planning Dept. by January 9th, 2007;
- The Main Street and Conference Center in the Grand Hotel were almost completed;
- The acres of property leveled for retail stores and restaurants by Coulston Enterprises remained undeveloped.
Several new subdivisions were created over the railroad tracks. Emerald Lakes became another name added to the growing list of names given to Heritage USA. New homes continued to be built along with a new clubhouse for the homeowners considered to be part of Emerald Lakes.
MorningStar’s New Years Conference from December 29th-31st was again held in the lobby of the hotel. Jim Bakker could not be there due to a conflict of schedules.