Since agreeing to vacate its Fillmore District home at the end of April, the congregation of the Church of Saint John Coltrane has at once celebrated their 60-day reprieve from eviction and protested their forced departure.
Now, in what Archbishop Franzo King speculates to the Examiner might be a response to one such demonstration held last Sunday, the church's landlord has broken its silence on the standoff.
Protesting eviction of Church of St John Coltrane in San Fran for Palm Sunday pic.twitter.com/A7WNiXlmwY— Kimberly Winston (@kjwinston11) March 20, 2016
“In a perfect world, we would provide that space at no cost,” the West Bay Conference Center wrote in a statement. As the Chronicle details, the private nonprofit center is also a black institution, one headed by another pastor, Floyd Trammell, who serves San Francisco General Hospital and the First Friendship Institutional Baptist Church.
"West Bay takes very seriously its mission to provide space, at below market rates, to organizations that serve our community," the statement continues. “Unfortunately, however, West Bay operates in the same ruthless economy that has engulfed the entire Fillmore District... As a result, West Bay has agreed to dismiss the eviction action against [Coltrane Church]." In prior eviction proceedings, the West Bay Center cited the Coltrane Church's failure to pay rent.
As King told the Chronicle, “This is supposed to be the Jazz Preservation District, and we would love to continue serving in that district... We would love to stay in the city, but I don’t know if the city has the heart for a black institution.”