Larry Rice

New Life Evangelistic Center
5:00 am
Tue November 19, 2013

'Overwhelming' Environment At St. Louis Homeless Shelter Triggers Neighborhood Dispute

The New Life Evangelistic Center at 1411 Locust Street.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

The Rev. Larry Rice opened his emergency shelter at the New Life Evangelistic Center in 1976 with permission from the city to house 32 people. Back then, the area around his building at 1411 Locust was mostly factories and warehouses for St. Louis’ garment district.

Many of those buildings are now loft apartments with bars and restaurants on the first floor, and Rice admits to regularly sheltering as many as 300 people a night.

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New Life Evangelistic Center
6:47 pm
Tue November 5, 2013

Larry Rice Gets His Say On Effort To Revoke Operating Permit For New Life Evangelistic Center

Larry Rice addresses the Board of Public Service on Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2013.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

The New Life Evangelistic Center’s emergency homeless shelter in downtown St. Louis is no worse for the neighborhood than bars nearby on Washington Avenue.

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New Life Evangelistic Center
7:21 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Effort To Revoke Occupancy Permit Of Downtown Homeless Shelter Begins

A group of downtown property owners is trying to get the city to revoke the occupancy permit of the New Life Evangelistic Center, saying its a detriment to the neighborhood.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

An effort by a group of downtown St. Louis residents to shutter the New Life Evangelistic Center got underway on Tuesday in front of the city's Board of Public Service.

It was the first of what will be several days of testimony on whether the homeless shelter run by the Rev. Larry Rice is a detriment to the surrounding neighborhood. The quasi-judicial proceeding was prompted by a petition from 134 people who own property within a prescribed radius of the shelter, which is at the corner of 14th and Locust streets.

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Belleville Homeless Shelter
8:54 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Homeless Advocate Submits Petition On Former YMCA In Belleville

An advocate for the homeless is pressing for Belleville voters to decide whether he can convert the city's former YMCA building into a shelter. The Rev. Larry Rice on Monday submitted a 790-signature petition to the St. Clair County Clerk's Office to force the ballot measure calling for the city to sell the property to his New Life Evangelistic Center in St. Louis for $1.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports the referendum could be on the April 9 municipal ballot if the petitions aren't challenged by Monday.

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Homeless Loitering
4:17 pm
Thu October 11, 2012

Rice: City Barricades Hurting Parking At Homeless Center

The New Life Evangelistic Center at 1411 Locust St. in St. Louis, Mo. (via Flickr/ pasa47)

Reverend Larry Rice says he is tired of waiting for the city to remove barriers that have surrounded his homeless shelter in downtown St. Louis for the past five weeks.

Sidewalks on both sides of Locust Street in front of New Life Evangelistic Center are blocked off by metal barriers. Bill Seidhoff, the director of the city’s department of human services, said the city placed the barriers there after receiving calls from residents who were concerned about hygiene and safety because of the homeless people who congregate and sleep around the center.

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County homelessness
4:35 pm
Fri August 31, 2012

County to add resources for homeless population

A big, green and white tent is erected where Rev. Larry Rice hopes to put new homeless camp in St. Louis County. The county announced on Aug. 31 that it plans to open an emergency shelter in its borders.
(Tim Llloyd/St. Louis Public Radio)

St. Louis County executive Charlie Dooley is pledging to open an emergency homeless shelter in the county by the end of the year.

Dooley announced the shift in policy in a series of Tweets on Friday. The county will also be looking for agencies to operate transitional housing - which is a stepping stone between a shelter and a permanent residence - and will host a homeless summit in October.

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Homeless Camps
2:10 pm
Sat August 11, 2012

Rice sets up new homeless camp in St. Louis County, officials want to avoid confrontation

A big, green and white tent is erected where Rev. Larry Rice hopes to put new homeless camp in St. Louis County.
Tim Lloyd St. Louis Public Radio

A handful of homeless people milled about in the shade of a big green and white tent in suburban St. Louis County.

The massive canopy represents the latest in a string of attempts by Rev. Larry Rice of the New Life Evangelistic Center to set up a camp for the homeless.  

St. Louis County officials and police were on hand Saturday morning while Rice began setting up the camp in a vacant lot on Lada Avenue.

Officials told Rice that he did not file the proper paperwork to have a portable toilet, and that he could not have multiple tents.  

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Homelessness
5:39 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

Rice: Belleville not dealing with homeless, closing shelters

Rev. Larry Rice spoke with reporters outside the Belleville Municipal Building Tuesday.
(Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio)

Rev. Larry Rice directed about 20 homeless persons to a mall in Fairview Heights on Tuesday to underscore the lack of shelters in St. Clair County.

Rice says many homeless persons seeking refuge from the triple-digit temperatures wind up across the river at his shelter downtown. 

“Belleville represents what we see in so many municipalities," Rice said. "Where people just aren’t dealing with the homeless. They’re closing shelters. We saw a shelter close here – the Salvation Army – in 2009. They made no other arrangements for the homeless.”

Homeless Camps
5:26 pm
Fri June 15, 2012

Rice sues city for condemning homeless camp

Rev. Larry Rice is asking a US District Court of Missouri to review St. Louis' condemnation of his homeless camp, formerly located in the St. Louis neighborhood of Botanical Heights.
Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio

Reverend Larry Rice is suing the city of St. Louis and Public Safety Director Eddie Roth for condemning a homeless camp he tried to set up last month near Interstate 44. 

The federal lawsuit filed Friday claims Roth failed to give a hearing prior to closing down the vacant lot on Vandeventer and interfered the group’s religious freedom.

“They went and condemned that vacant ground," Rice said. "And in a matter of hours they told us we had to get off the property and if we didn’t that we’d be arrested – of which I was arrested. And there was no violation.”

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Homeless Camps
5:43 pm
Wed May 23, 2012

Setbacks lead church group to plan covert homeless camp

City officials removed the encampment by the riverfront known as Hopeville earlier this month.
Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio

A local church is taking a more low-key approach in its struggle with city officials to set up a homeless camp in St. Louis. 

Rev. Larry Rice of the New Life Evangelistic Center was arrested last week as he attempted to open a tent city called Integrity Village on a two-acre plot of private land at Vendeventer Ave. north of Interstate 44. City officials cleared the site and condemned the area as a health hazard. But Rice's son, Rev. Chris Rice, says they aren’t giving up.

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