Anyone remember the hymn “Almighty Fortress is our God?” It’s always been one of my favorites. In today’s world sometimes that adage gets misinterpreted….
There was a time in history when being an upstanding member of a church community was highly revered. Families paid a big price to reserve a life-long pew in their chosen place of worship. Great value was placed on spiritual gathering places rather than individual fortresses.
I was saddened by an article I read last week about one of “the most imposing church edifices in the country,” according to the Baltimore Sun newspaper. Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church, in one of the city’s most architecturally beautiful settings is in danger of closing. It doesn’t seem to matter that in 1870 some families paid as much as $5,460 to reserve their spot where they could come weekly to open their hearts and souls and worship a deity. Do few care about it’s 168 foot steeple of serpentine design? And what about the pair of rose windows and other magnificent stained glass housed in the structure? The fine pointed stonework apparently is immaterial in an age when we’re more tuned into news of human life lost because cornerstone principles in which this country was founded, are disappearing. Lately our country has paid a mighty price with a moral compass that has been out of whack.
We need to preserve sanctuaries where history is evident, where people are reminded what’s deep inside the American spirit is what bound us together and made us the resilient people we are. Other historically important churches like the Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church can be found across the country. If one dares to open the mind and the doors and take a peak – whats found inside might be spiritually uplifting and contain saving graces.
Photos Above: Mt. Vernon United Methodist Church