NEHS alum helps Nueva Vida Church go green

By LESLIE COLLINS
Northeast News
May 29, 2013

 

Solar-Panel-3

 

Thanks to a Northeast High School alum, Nueva Vida (New Life) Church in Historic Northeast is harnessing the power of the sun to reduce electricity costs.

Solar panels now line the church’s flat roof, soaking up the sun and saving the church thousands.

Located at 141 N. Lawndale Ave., the building is more than 100 years old and the cost of heating and cooling the building ranged from $2,000 to $4,000 per month.

“We were spending so much money on electricity,” Nueva Vida Pastor Sam DeLeon said. “It’s (solar panels) going to alleviate all of the financial stress on us and allow us to do things we’ve been wanting to do.”

Those things include operating a food pantry and clothing closet for the community, among other initiatives.

“We want to be able to help our community more and let them know they have a church here,” he said.

Cost of the solar panel system and installation totaled about $100,000, but the church received it for free, thanks to the Eco-Energia of Missouri LTD program, “Community Connection Program.” Based in Blue Springs, Mo., Eco-Energia specializes in heating and cooling and green energy.

“This is our first (solar system) install, period,” said Virgil “Sunny” Julian, owner of Eco-Energia and a 1945 NEHS graduate. “It feels good to give back. I decided that years ago in my life, my function for being here on earth was to make it easier for other people.”

Nueva Vida currently shares the space with Bethany Baptist Church, which formerly owned the building. With a dwindling congregation, Bethany Baptist could no longer afford the upkeep of the building, including repairing damage from a substantial water leak nor the cost of electricity, said life-long Bethany Baptist member Melinda Minks.

Nueva Vida fixed the roof, repaired water damage in the sanctuary and is continuing to remodel the church.

“We have been really determined that God has a purpose for this church on this corner,” she said.

With the solar panel’s financial savings, that purpose will only continue to flourish, she said.

Having a solar panel system can reduce electricity costs up to 75 percent, sometimes more, Julian said. Studying previous month’s electricity usage, Eco-Energia designed a system specifically for the church’s energy needs and then some.

“We designed a system that will create enough usage and power to furnish their usage and extra power to be sold back to KCP&L,” Julian said.

Julian explained that if the solar system is creating more power than what the church is using, it causes the meter to run backwards and the surplus power can be sold back to KCP&L.

“They (church) would actually have a check cut to them,” he said.

For solar panels to function, direct sunlight isn’t always needed.

“Solar panels will actually generate power out of moonlight; they can generate off of other lights, like street lights,” Julian said.

“This business of solar panels is just amazing,” Minks said. “This 21st Century use of God’s gifts, that’s the sun, is enabling all of us to be able to have a place to come worship.”

 

Eco-Energia Owner and 1945 NEHS graduate Virgil "Sunny" Julian (front row, far left) poses with members of the church and those who helped install the solar panel system. Pictured far right, front row is Nueva Vida Pastor Sam DeLeon. Photos by Leslie Collins

Eco-Energia Owner and 1945 NEHS graduate Virgil “Sunny” Julian (front row, far left) poses with members of the church and those who helped install the solar panel system. Pictured far right, front row is Nueva Vida Pastor Sam DeLeon. Photos by Leslie Collins

 

 

Comments are closed.

  • “Bobo”: Kansas City’s undiscovered legend

    June 30th, 2015
    by

    By Michaela Bishop Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Today, there aren’t many World War II veterans left alive.


    Weather causes havoc in HNE

    June 30th, 2015
    by

    Weather damage. More than 40,000 trees were severely damaged or downed Thursday night just in Kansas City, Mo.


    Community Officer earns major award

    June 30th, 2015
    by

    By Michael Bushnell Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — A civilian ride-along with the Kansas City Police Department can be an amazingly eye opening experience.


    Signs of change at the Kansas City Museum

    June 24th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — The recently removed Motel Capri sign won’t be the only sign archived into the Kansas City Museum’s Collections.
    On Saturday, June 27, the Kansas City


    Home country pride on display during Fashion Show

    June 24th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — The Northeast enjoys its many diversities and cultures.
    So to celebrate World Refugee Day, the Independence Avenue Community Improvement District [CID] invited its many


  • Lykins neighborhood cleaned up by St. Louis youth group

    June 16th, 2015
    by

    Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — The two partners had never met.
    Before this past weekend, members of a youth group from St.


    Chamber celebrates 21 years in style

    June 16th, 2015
    by

    Birthday celebration for the ages. Last week, the Northeast Kansas City Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 21st birthday in style.


    Crocodile muddy

    June 9th, 2015
    by

    Joe Jarosz Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Recently, the Kansas City Police Department discovered several Caimans in a backyard of an Eastside home.


    NE neighborhood comes together to clean

    June 2nd, 2015
    by

    Cleaning up for a better community. Residents and businesses came together last week to clean the streets of the Paseo West Neighborhood.


    Bee friendly

    June 2nd, 2015
    by

    By Dale Castle Northeast News The sun was shining and the temperature was a pleasant 61 degrees the afternoon when I parked my truck at a local business.


  • Local Weather

  • What’s Happening

    Children’s Choice helping kids for nearly 40 years

    By Michaela Bishop Northeast News KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Children’s Choice Daycare has helped over thousands of children within the past 39 years. The daycare itself helps children from ages ranging to

    Uncle Sam ‘Wants You’ to know his origins

    Northeast News Historians aren’t completely certain how the legendary character Uncle Sam was created or how he got his name. One prominent theory is that Uncle Sam was named after Samuel

    retorts illustrated bryan stalder

    retorts illustrated bryan stalder [...]