"...and Open Doors" ??

Not long ago I decided to catch the train over to Fort Worth to see First United Methodist Church downtown there, which I understood to be (architecturally) one of those great Cathedrals built by United Methodists to the Glory of God. Not surprisingly, since it was a Saturday, I found all the doors locked and had to simply enjoy the sort of cloister/garden and the outside of the church. The two groundskeepers that I did find refused to give me a peak inside the sanctuary but told me to come back the next day (Sunday).

Compare that to St. Alban's Episcopal Chapel on LSU's campus: the doors to the church are wide open, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year - even on Christmas Day and Easter!! The same is true of many Roman Catholic and especially Episcopal/Anglican churches. In fact, it was St. Alban's doors being open that led me to discover The Book of Common Prayer and the Anglican tradition to begin with.

For God's sake (really), can we (I speak not only to United Methodists, but pretty much everyone) trust in God enough to open our church doors - at least during business hours? Can we not at least tell the congregation that it really is ok for them to use the sanctuary beyond 1 hour on Sundays if they want a quiet place to pray? Who knows - some of them might even show up to pray. Better still, maybe some outsiders will come shuffling in like I did at St. Albans and become curious about what goes on in such a place. Maybe...if we open our doors.

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