Life, love and the challenges we face as the heart of home.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

A Tribute: My Childhood Church

I have been ruminating over this post for two months and now that it isn't so fresh, I feel like I can talk about it.  I usually write about crafty DIY projects or recipes but this post is more of a tribute to something that was a big part of my life for a very long time.  My involvement in it also gave me many opportunities to use my creativity over the years so it's hard for me to omit it just because it's a little out of the box.  Those of you that know me and my family well will understand.

From 1928 to 2013, Middlesex Bible Chapel preached Christ.  
Crucified.  Risen.  Coming Again.   

The church where I was born, raised and married in was sold on March 28, 2013.  That may not seem like a big deal to many of you but there is a thirty-three year long history there for me... and even longer for my family if you consider my dad started attending the church when he was a 6-year old boy.  Yes, it is just a building but this building represents some of my fondest memories of faith and family over the years.

Here is some history...

February 12, 1928: The first session of the Sunday School was held in the Parker Fire House. Thirty six were present.

June 1931: The present site of Middlesex Chapel on Fairfield Avenue was purchased.

July through August 1933: Camp fire meeting were held on the site every Saturday evening.

September 1934: Construction of the main building began. Most of the original building was construction by volunteer labor.

July 10, 1936: The dedication service was held in the partially completed building.

July 12, 1936: First session of the Bible School was held in the new building.

July 19, 1936: First Sunday Evening Gospel Service conducted.

August 21, 1936: First Young People's Meeting was held.  (youth group)

July 1939: First Daily Vacation Bible School was conducted.

September 1950: Bible Hour was inaugurated.

January 1953: First missionary from Middlesex Chapel left for the Belgian Congo.

Then there is some of my history... circa 1979 through 2011

I remember my late grandfather reading from Isaiah 53 every Sunday... or most Sundays.  I can still hear how he pronounced "iniquity" in his thick Scottish brogue. 

I remember accepting Jesus as my Savior before bed when I was five.  My grandmother was my Vacation Bible School teacher that week. 

I remember my grandmother playing the piano for decades and urging me to keep up with my practicing so I could take over for her one day.  She was still playing on the very last Sunday at the age of 87.

I remember being a kid and thinking how cool it was to go to church on New Year's Eve with my whole family and watch movies on the big projector in our pajamas and then pray in the New Year at midnight. 

I remember walking down the aisle to my Adam with my Dad.  My parents, uncle and sister were married there as well.
I remember being involved with Sunday School, Youth Group and VBS for years and the joy we all felt when a child accepted Christ.  That was the whole reason we were there.

I remember when we pulled out the crazy, old bushes in front of the church and replanted the ones that are still there today.

I remember the rich fellowship we had and how so many of the people became an extension of our family.

I remember the raucous laughter during our Christmas Party Chinese Auctions!  

I also remember the challenges of being such a small assembly.  

2 Corinthians 12: 9
But he said to me,  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me."

The Lord allowed Middlesex to be a light for a little while and I am glad I could be a part of it for a time.  While we are sad to see the church close, we know the Lord has a plan.  The closing of the church is a huge transition for my parents and grandmother who were there until the very end.  

But when the Lord closes a door, he will most certainly open a window.  I am happy to say he has done just that as a group of believers have moved in and outreach to the community continues.  The red doors will remain open as a new congregation begins a new chapter there.  

And they, too, will preach Christ.  

Crucified.  Risen.  Coming Again. 

3 comments:

  1. beautiful. moving post. read with tears. only eternity will reveal the full impact that wee kirk had for His kingdom.
    fi

    ReplyDelete
  2. Very touching..u made us cry.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for sharing. Very moving.

    ReplyDelete

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