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Michigan businessman donates $20M to Catholic site

Michigan businessman donates $20M to Catholic site
Posted at 12:20 PM, Dec 18, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-18 12:20:04-05

A businessman is donating $20 million to help expand a Catholic pilgrimage site in Detroit.

Crain's Detroit Business reports that Art Van Elslander, founder of Art Van Furniture, is donating to the Solanus Casey Center. Interest in the center has increased since November when the late Rev. Solanus Casey was beatified and put on the path to sainthood.

The Rev. David Preuss is the center's director. He says officials hope to use the money to acquire city-owned property to create more parking space for the center. Officials also hope to build a cafe with outdoor seating, open green spaces for large gatherings, gardens, an outdoor votive chapel and housing for visitors of the center.

Van Elslander says the donation pays homage to his father's friendship with Casey.