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Pastor Camps Out On Roof Of Old Motel For Community Change

Pastor Corey Brooks

Pastor Corey Brooks announces Project HOOD, the plan to turn a shuttered motel into a community center. (Credit: CBS/New Beginnings Church)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — A South Side pastor is camping out on the roof of a motel he helped to close down over prostitution and drugs, in an effort to buy the building and use it to help the community change.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports, 10 caskets were lined up Tuesday in front of the shuttered Super Motel, at 6625 S. King Dr.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports

“Just this summer alone, we’ve had 10 funerals for young black males,” said the Rev. Corey Brooks of New Beginnings Church.

Brooks was preparing Tuesday to spend 21 days camping on top of the old motel, to raise money to buy it and turn it into a community center.

“It’s time to get creative and think out the box, and even during the recession, I’m finding that people are very generous,” he said.

Brooks said at a funeral over the weekend for a 17-year-old murder victim, shooting broke out on the street, and he demanded that anyone with a gun turn it in.

“And I was amazed and shocked that we had four guns turned in. One of them was a 9mm Glock with a scope,” he said, “and to think that people would bring that type of weapon to church.”

Brooks’ effort to revive the hotel for a new purpose is called Project HOOD, short for Helping Others Obtain Destiny.