Mount Shepherd Retreat Center to Grant and Create 87.935-Acre Conservation Easement

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

Whereas, ¶ 2516 of the Book of Discipline states that “Title to annual conference…camps, conference grounds, and retreat centers held in trust by an incorporated board…can be mortgaged, or sold and conveyed by such corporation…only after authorization by the annual or district conference to which such body is related; and Whereas, Mount Shepherd Retreat Center, Inc., located in Asheboro, North Carolina, is a separately incorporated annual conference camp and retreat center which holds its 543.3 acres of real property in trust for the benefit of the Annual Conference; and Whereas, one of the primary purposes of Mount Shepherd is to promote environmental stewardship and to teach creation care; and Whereas, Mount Shepherd has reached an agreement with The Piedmont Land Conservancy (PLC) that will preserve the natural beauty and ecological harmony of 87.935 acres in perpetuity by insuring the land will not be developed; and Whereas, PLC is offering $2000 per acre for this Conservation Easement, providing critical capital in the midst of a global pandemic that has severely impacted Mount Shepherd’s ability to generate revenue; and Whereas, the proceeds of $175,870 will allow Mount Shepherd to reach financial security by paying off all indebtedness to the Western NC Conference and providing an essential cash resource for ongoing operational needs; and Whereas, the beneficial trust interest of the Annual Conference in the real property would be subordinate and subject to the perpetual conservation easement; Whereas, the board of directors of Mount Shepherd have approved this project. Therefore, be it Resolved, that the Western North Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church approves the grant of easement rights by Mount Shepherd Retreat Center to Piedmont Land Conservancy in the 87.935 acres for $175,870, as agreed upon by the parties, and further authorize The Board of Trustees, Western North Carolina Conference, United Methodist Church, Inc. to execute all documents and agreements necessary to carry out the same.