State closes church-run credit union for 'unsound' operations

Breana Noble
The Detroit News
Greater Christ Baptist Church Credit Union.

Michigan regulators shut down a Detroit church-owned credit union with more than $600,000 in deposits on Tuesday for "unsound" operations.

The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services said in a statement it closed Greater Christ Baptist Church Credit Union for "operating in an unsafe and unsound manner."

The state-chartered credit union at 3544 Iroquois in Detroit had operated since 1957. It  served 396 members, credit union employees and immediate family members. The credit union had $608,000 in assets and $470,500 deposits as of its last quarterly filing. It had two part-time employees.

The National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund protects the deposits of the credit union's members up to $250,000. The National Credit Union Administration's Asset Management and Assistance Center will mail account-holders individuals with information about insurance coverage and how to make a claim.

The Michigan financial services department's director, Patrick McPharlin, sought a petition in Ingham County Circuit Court to close the credit union. The National Credit Union Administration, a federal agency, is managing the liquidation.

“Greater Christ Baptist Church Credit Union members should be confident that their insured deposits are protected,” McPharlin said in a statement.

The National Credit Union Administration’s Assistance Center has a toll-free hotline that can answer questions about insurance coverage; call (877) 715-0777 weekdays between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. Information also is available at

According to the National Credit Union Administration, the last credit union in Michigan to be closed was in March 2017. Valley State Credit Union in Saginaw closed, but Burton, Michigan-based Elga Credit Union assumed its assets.

"This is not very common," Andrea Miller, a spokeswoman for the Michigan financial services department, said of Greater Christ Baptist's closure. "They're typically merged or get bought out."