As far back as the 1950's independant churches and individuals recognized the need for a mission in York County. One of the founders, Stuart Shelley, said, "from the very beginning the importance of a mission for York was on the hearts of all of us. We secured reports from other cities concerning its significance, and savings in dollars to a city."
In 1961 representatives from York began moving forward with establishing the York Rescue Mission. We opened our doors in 1962 at Frey's Avenue and East Princess Street. There were only two buildings; one to house the superintendant and family; and the other to provide sleeping quarters for transients, a small restaurant to serve meals and a chapel. Another founder and the first Board President, Herman R. Smith said, "our first priority of the mission has always been the salvation of men's souls. Their spiritual needs come first, then secondly, their physical needs. We help them, house them, and feed them. We help them find God, and get over the problems they may have so they can reenter the mainstream of life."
Within the first two years of operation, the Mission quickly became overcrowded at our original location. The Mission saw the need to expand our facilities to meet the needs of the community. We had a tremendous amount of financial help through the greater York area and our present site was acquired in the same year at 367 West Market Street (the former location of an L and H 5 and 10c store).
Since 1964 we have continued to expand our facilities and currently own 15 buildings that enable us to carry out the goals of the York Rescue Mission. These buildings include a Men's Shelter, Women & Children's Emergency Shelter, Lighthouse Youth Center, and three Economy Stores.
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