Friday, February 24, 2012
Our Church's Old Building Up in Flames
Two days after Ash Wednesday, we at First Baptist Church experienced ashes of a different sort. The old building where our church worshiped from the early 1900s until 1980 was engulfed in flames, the interior being completely burned within a matter of minutes. And though we no longer meet at that location or even own the building anymore, we are still deeply saddened by this event.
We know that the church, the body of Christ, consists of people, not buildings. And we know that the destruction of a building does nothing to destroy our faith. But we also know that some of the most significant and memorable moments in many of our church members' lives happened in that sacred space - conversions, baptisms, weddings, etc. So to see that building go up in flames was painful. And when you consider that this year marks the 175th Anniversary of our church, a time when we are especially sensitive to our history, it makes it all the more difficult to lose such an important part of that physical history.
As a church, we will remain steadfast in the goodness of Almighty God. And though we are saddened by what happened today, we remain comforted by the fact that "neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth," - nor flames nor fires - "nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:38-39).