Holy present! Stackhouse gives mom a church

KINSTON, N.C. -- Young athletes who make it big often share
their success by buying their parents a car or a house.

Jerry Stackhouse Stackhouse

Dallas Mavericks guard Jerry Stackhouse did much the same. Only
the house he gave his mother was a house of worship.

The Stackhouse family came together Sunday in their hometown for
the dedication of the House of Hope Free Will Baptist Church, which
the three-time NBA All-Star paid to refurbish for its pastor -- his
mother, Minnie.

"She has been dedicated to serving the community as long as I
can remember," Stackhouse said. "That's more than 30 years."

The building, which formerly housed a different church, replaces
one that Minnie Stackhouse ran in a different neighborhood of
Kinston. Her new parish is located closer to the people she hopes
her ministry will reach.

"This is a special day for this church and my mother," Jerry
Stackhouse said. "She now has a place where she feels she can best
manage her programs and best serve the community."

The church has actually been active for some time, holding its
first service in November and a Thanksgiving feast two weeks later
for people in need.

More than 300 people attended Sunday's dedication.

"I'm just overwhelmed by all of this," Minnie Stackhouse said
after the service. "It is just so overwhelming when God blesses
something you so strongly desire.

"I don't know what the future here will be," she added. "But
God does."