Closing a Misison

Yesterday was a very busy and emotional day. I had the sad duty to help in the closing of a mission parish not far from my parish. As I understand it the mission had been in existence for about 10 years and really was in a great location in a rented building. For some reason they could not grow larger than the 10 families that they had attending the church. So it was decided to close the church. Their last liturgy was on November 1st and the sad duty of moving now takes place.

I went to the mission with another priest to take the altar and other items used for the Divine Liturgy to store at my place until they can be used, we pray, at the monastery we are working on. More info on that here. I do plan to blog more on that topic but for now you can look at the information that is on the website.

We arrived at the church and met the priest there and showed us around. He was very emotional and I remarked on several occasions that this just did not feel right. But I was assured that the items would be put to good use and we would remember the people from All Saints Mission when we said liturgy on the altar or used the items. We had three trucks and a trailer and still do not get everything. We will return on Tuesday to take another load of items including the icon screen.

It is never easy to see a church close. I know several people in the Church of Rome that have faced this and it continues not only in the Roman Church but in other churches and Orthodoxy is no different. Closing a church is not easy but sometimes it is necessary. Sometimes we find the need to close a church and move it to another location to be more effective or the church just closes because there are no more people or there is no vision. I make no judgements on this particular mission but it just did not work. They has a beautiful yet simple worship space.

Please pray for the parishioners of the former All Saints Mission and please pray for us as we continue to dismantle it.

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