Sunday, March 18, 2012

Stone Church

We turned off of the main highway onto a gravel road so we could get a better look at this old stone church.  Just as I was about to snap the picture, a pickup pulled up beside our vehicle.  The driver rolled his window down and asked, "What do you think of the church?"

It was almost as if he knew we had questions, and he appeared out of nowhere eager to give us the answers.

Sadness comes whenever we see abandoned farm houses, barns, and other buildings left to ruin, or when churches like this one are abandoned and forgotten.  We were so grateful when this guy shared his story.

His wife attended church services here when she was a little girl.  A couple years ago, the property came up for sale, and they purchased the ground and the church.  The roof was already falling in, so the first thing they did was replace it with a modern tin roof.  Before their purchase, the church board had gutted the inside and sold the pews, altar, and other contents, piece by piece, at an auction sale for little or nothing.  He said it was the saddest thing you ever wanted to see.

Both of us felt there was a purpose for this chance encounter.  Maybe we were meant to be reassured that there are still good people in the world who truly care about these reverent old structures that faithfully served human souls.  There was a day when men, women, and children put on their Sunday clothes, transported themselves out in the country, walked through the doors of this church, in the hopes of satisfying their spiritual needs. They gathered, they prayed, and they sang.

If our faith in man's goodness was renewed, then I guess this old stone church is still sustaining the spiritual side of those who stop by for a visit.