Sunday, October 01, 2006


Sam came up to me this afternoon, about an hour before the start of our church's first worship gathering in De Poort, and he asked if we were planning to keep up the wooden cross in front of the room. He suggested that the blatant iconography might be a bit disconcerting to some in the church (as the Zolder50 culture has typically chosen for a less direct presentation of the cross, in an effort to make it more meaningful and less, well, decorative and cliche). But in this case, on this day, I disagreed. I told Sam that we should let the cross stand.

"I am not ashamed of the cross of Christ," I said... "Nor the flag of Mexico."

The maps and flags of the world -- spread along the circumference of the room -- seem to serve as a reminder of the dramatic geographic transplantation that our church has experienced within the last week. And not just a geographic change, but an aesthetic adjustment as well. The Kantina Room of De Poort is designed to be a multi-purpose room -- used by multiple groups for multiple purposes -- and as such, it is a bit of a departure from the natural, wood-hued gezelligheid of our church's former home on the Leidsekade. It's a fairly significant adjustment for us to sit in rows of chairs, with flourescent lighting overhead, and explicitly Christian wall hangings. Very onzolderig (I think I just made up a Dutch word).

But at least we had a place to gather!

As a church community, we managed to completely alter our weekly routine, move out of the Zolder, pull together the necessary personnel and parcels to put on a worship gathering... And over 150 people managed to find their way to our new location (which, in my opinion, seems to be a very promising start -- given the drastic changes in location and meeting schedule)! I'd be curious to hear what other people thought of the experience, but I felt like it was an encouraging start to the post-Zolder era of our church. It was so great to have a place to gather, protected from the threatening rainclouds (thanks to our friends from YWAM!). Todd did a great job using this week's teaching to remind us about the inherently nomadic nature of the people of God. And even though we had a couple of minor glitches in operations, things went remarkably smoothly.

We have very little to complain about. And quite contrary to feeling ashamed about our nomadic circumstances, we have every reason to feel nothing but thankful and thrilled.


At 8:58 PM, Blogger e.e. said...

Hey Eric, well it was not till I read thses last few posts by you that the reality of moving from the Zolder hit me...and so did the tears...actaully tears I did not know where there. Maybe it is that I am coming up on beig in the US for a year...I don't know..but grief found its way to actualization. Thanks for the pictures, they have hlped me live in the reality of this change.


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