This is more from Rev. Emily C. Heath over at New Sacred, a United Church of Christ blog. I used a quote from her in yesterday’s image post as well. Her blog post is a defense of church buildings…which I like. While I’m not sure, if I were planting a church today, I’d want a building, I think one of the things we need to do with our present church buildings is use them for our communities.
Here’s a good segment of her post:
I pastor a congregation with a beautiful, historic building from the late 1700s, one that inspires people to walk in off the street to explore it.
While we value our history as a congregation, the members of my church have been adamant about this building being more than a clubhouse for ourselves. We have our Sunday services of course, all held in a sanctuary that is both beautiful and functional.
But we also open our doors to AA three times a week. We host community lectures and events. We open our columbarium for all who wish their ashes to be buried. We grow vegetables in our community garden. And we host whiffle ball games out back in the summer and pass out candy from the big front doors on Halloween.
I will never willingly pastor a church that loves its building more than it loves Jesus; but I will always jump at the chance to serve where the people are willing to use every resource they have in creative ways to serve God and their communities. Including their building.
So, there you go.