For the second time in our married life, we have left our church home. In both instances, it was a matter in the making over several years.
The first was in support of our pastor. Our church had dwindled down to 30, people were being all judgmental, up in everyone else's business and when the final straw came, we left along with another couple and the pastor and his wife.
We searched a few churches and after a month and a half, we settled on the church that had been our home for the past 7+ years.
Our pastor at this last church retired 4 1/2 years ago. He is a wonderful man with a kind soul and an ability to tie the bible and current life issues altogether.
We wish he had never retired.
Our current pastor kind of hit us off guard from the beginning. There were things that we didn't agree with, but rolled with the changes anyhow because we figured that everything would mesh a bit eventually.
They never did.
Recently, there has been a lot of rush to judgment going on and instead of embracing members in times of challenge and strife, there are members beating them down. Why wouldn't they want to reach out to them? One of the "them?" She is one of our extremely good friends. What has happened to her was the straw the broke the camels back.
We are at a place that we don't like to be, yet look forward to the opportunity to explore. Neighbors had us visit their Episcopalian church with them a few weeks ago. The church is beautiful and the people are absolutely wonderful. The church service is conducted in a very Catholic manner and while that is certainly not a bad thing, I've grown up Baptist (since the age of 7) and Hubs has been going to the Baptist church with me since we were engaged. We've both been out of it for so long. It was a culture shock of sorts.
K- and I will be hanging at another Baptist church with friends of ours for the next few weeks. They are a small, tight-knit but welcoming congregation that we met at a cook-out this summer. Their pastor is very down to earth. At least we know that these next few weeks, K- and I won't be the only ones bringing a bible to church with us.
In the weeks that follow, we're going to be visiting the Methodist church up the street. They have fantastic children's programming and a Sunday school specifically on CURRENT SOCIAL ISSUES! Hubs was even excited about that! We've been to the church for kids events and are excited to see what a Sunday holds.
We'll be checking out some non-denominational churches. One thing we know is that we aren't in a rush to settle in. We want to find the perfect church home were all of us can feel at ease again. Still, the idea of being church homeless is one that brings me much anxiety. It brings Hubs excitement to see homes that will be a better fit for us and K-.
Pray for us, will you?