, , , , , , , ,

Old Wooden Church Surrounded by Fields

A Quiet Dignified Sanctuary

Sunday Morning. The Lord’s Day, or so the old saying goes. Though some celebrate it on Saturday instead.

I love the look of rural churches, sitting out there in the country forlorn and surrounded by fields of wheat, barley, and canola. There is a humble grace about them, harkening back to a time….

Who gathers there when the doors are thrown open?

Living in one of the oldest Neighborhoods of Calgary, we are fortunate enough to have three old dignified churches within a few blocks of our place. Not that we attend any, mind you, but merely having the buildings in the environment pleases me. They speak of the past, and there is a stillness about them, a sort of silent buddha-like smile to their hoary stone facades.

My wife, son, and I tried to attend one of the nearby churches on a Sunday several years ago. The Lamp Post Church has a New Agey feel to it, complete with soft rock band belting out tunes, but there was still too much Bible in the place for me. Too much lifting of the arms into the air like spiritual radar dishes. Too claustrophobic.

‘It’s just a compendium of books,’ Xenon has said of the Bible. ‘People chose those books nearly two thousand years ago from amongst a great many available to them. Divinely inspired? Sure, absolutely. And so is everything else!’

Perhaps later today I’ll find time to drop by the Omphalos Cafe for a tea and a chat with Xenon. Inside, there is a church-like feel about the place, a hushed, rich spiritual solemnity. Leavened with laughter too. Divinely inspired, no less.

We have need of sacred places, those special sanctuaries apart from the day to day world we earn our living and feed our families in, live and die in. Several posts back I talked of the zones, personal and communal, where we tap into for balance, for strength, and meaning. Convening in a church, temple, or sanctuary, is like coming together for a booster shot of communal zone. They are hubs around which the community revolves, orienting all action, providing meaning.

Time for me to get on with Sunday. The weather is gorgeous and the plan is to go rafting down the River later on. Rafts and Rivers, a nice little metaphorical way to wrap up this post.

Blessings, for Life is ALL there is.