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Chapman University offers to buy Crystal Cathedral

Crystal Cathedral, located in Garden Grove, Calif., is millions of dollars in debt.

July 6, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Chapman University in Orange is offering to buy the financially-troubled Crystal Cathedral for $46 million.

The iconic church is $35 million in debt and filed for bankruptcy last year. The university's Board of Trustees authorized the proposal at a meeting on June 27.

Chapman's president told Eyewitness News Tuesday that the university's proposal would allow the ministry to continue to use the cathedral.

"Chapman University moved from Los Angeles to Orange County in 1954 and [Rev. Robert Schuller] started his ministry on top of a snack shack at a drive-in theater in 1955 - so a year apart. We've been in it together and I'd like to think we could be long-term neighbors," said President James Doti.

The nearly 35-acre Garden Grove property is located just three miles from Chapman University's campus.

Doti said the other buildings on the church's property could be used for a medical, dental or pharmacy school.

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