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Fired Harvest Bible Chapel Pastor James MacDonald Selling $1.6M Home

James MacDonald, the former pastor of the Harvest Bible Chapel megachurch in the Chicago area, is trying to sell his well-appointed Elgin, IL, home.

The co-founder was cast out of the church in February 2019, after recordings of him making “highly inappropriate” comments surfaced. MinistryWatch reported that the mansion first came on the market in March, for $1.9 million.

At the end of May, the price on the 10-acre property was cut to $1.6 million. That means the formerly well-compensated leader of Harvest Bible Chapel is willing to take 15% less to move this home off his books.

In a 2017 sermon on money, MacDonald preached, “You will never be living in victory financially until you spend less than you make. Live on less than you make.”

The property is located about 4 miles from the church’s Elgin campus, one of the church’s seven campuses in the Chicago area. Even with the price cut, the custom-built home far exceeds the town’s current median list price of $250,000. 

Great room
Great room

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Gourmet kitchen
Gourmet kitchen

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Library
Library

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Lower-level bar
Lower-level bar

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Completed in 2015, the custom-built home features five bedrooms, 5.5 baths, and 5,250 square feet of living space.

The listing details note that the expansive space offers “designer finishes throughout.” The ample use of wood in the residence gives it a rustic vibe. Other design features include exposed timber beams, an antler light fixture, and candelabras.

The airy layout includes a sun-filled, two-story, timber-framed great room, with wide board flooring, a wood-burning fireplace, and custom cabinetry. 

A gourmet kitchen includes a pantry, high-end appliances, and a breakfast nook. In addition, the layout features a formal dining room and an office with built-ins.

Located on the main level, the master retreat includes a den, walk-in closet, en suite bath, and a workout room. The suite includes a private porch with a hot tub.

Upstairs, a grand, curved staircase leads to a loft, library, three more bedrooms, and two bathrooms. 

On the lower level, more entertainment options abound. The walk-out basement space includes a kitchen/bar, game room with a billiard table and shuffleboard, and a tiered theater room that has movie-style seating with drink holders.

The grounds boast an outdoor kitchen, fireplace, and extensive landscaping, with gardens and trees as well as a koi pond and waterfall.

Other amenities include state-of-the-art security and a sound system.

“All you have to do is move in,” the listing description states.

MacDonald, 59, founded Harvest Bible Chapel in 1988, and expanded his parishioner base from a couple of dozen people to well over 10,000. His daily Bible-based program, “Walk in the Word,” was broadcast on television and radio from 1997 to 2019. He’s also the author of over 15 books on religious topics.

Wincy Mathew with @properties Arlington Heights holds the listing.

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