Thursday, March 22, 2012
After 2 1/2 months of holding worship services in our church basement, our congregation moved back to the first-floor sanctuary. We celebrated its renewal with new plaster, paint and carpet. Our old church has a lovely sanctuary, with a soaring domed ceiling, elaborate architectural features and daylight that radiates throughout from giant stained glass windows. Last Sunday, the sanctuary shone, and I was reminded of how much that space means to me and how much it has been important in my life. From my days in the children's choir and getting confirmed to getting married and saying goodbye to my precious parents, our church's sanctuary has been just that, a sanctuary in which to celebrate and to grieve, a place to pray, to listen and to meditate, a space in which we can leave our everyday concerns behind and find peace. Last Sunday at church, we heard the message that God is always with us and loves us as we are. In an age when everyone expects an increasing amount from us and judgment abounds, the message that we are OK as we are and that we are all welcome in our church resonated with me as I sat in that place called sanctuary.