We love to sing the children’s hymn, “The church is not a building, the church is not a steeple, the church is not a resting place, the church is the people.” We are going to put this hymn to the test! We will be worshiping at the Merrimac Senior Center during the worst of the snow season, beginning January 15 (which was approved by the town selectmen) through end of February or into March if necessary.
The center is fully-handicapped accessible, has a large, flat parking lot with everything we need for worship, even an organ and piano, and they have graciously offered their space at no charge. This will solve the safety concern of on-street parking on the narrow roads due to snow banks as well as the treach-erous walk in snowy conditions. Although obviously an issue since the church’s founding, this is the first time we’ve had an opportunity to do something about it. When voting on this decision several Church council members mentioned that this is also an exciting outreach possibility for those who may not be comfortable coming to a church building, and will give the church increased visibility for instance for the mobile park is right across the street.
This may be a difficult adjustment for some people who have always worshiped within the church building so please be sensitive to one another during these 8 weeks. The church is in fact the people of God – we can find courage together as we reach out to people with the love of Christ, whether they be elderly within our congregation or those who have never set foot in a church.
To make Operation Snowbird (the name idea by the way from Walter Paszko – love it!) a success we will need everyone’s help. We will need help setting up and taking down chairs each week, creative ideas for making the space worshipful, and assistance in transporting needed items such as hymnals. There are many unknowns, for instance whether we need to bring our own sound system (if you have one you would lend for 8 Christmas Eve weeks please let us know!).
If you feel led to help in a particular way, please contact the church office or Pastor Gwyneth. Above all, please keep your church family in prayer as we make this temporary transition.