Likewise, not all churches close their doors in the same manner. This church’s Board met last month and came to the difficult decision to end Sunday worship services in this building after April 30. For many churches this would be the equivalent of a period—a full stop. But not this church.
One way to describe the church’s closure would be a question mark. Right now, we are waiting for the Yates Center City Council to decide whether to enter into an agreement with the Board regarding the donation of this building along with its property to serve as the community’s public library. We pray that the Holy Spirit will guide them to the correct decision. However, the questions only begin at that point.
Another end punctuation mark is the ellipsis—four dots that indicate some continuity beyond the end of the sentence. The congregation will continue to meet—probably monthly—in the time to come to decide how best to use the church’s assets in a way that provides ongoing witness of our commitment to the Gospel. I hope to be invited to these meetings to provide a sacred context as the congregation continues to carry out the business of the Church. Even though we will be closing the doors as of May 1, the First Christian Church of Yates Center will continue to operate.
Finally, there is the exclamation mark. Many celebrations mark the conclusion of our worship in this building including two weddings, six baptisms, a celebratory dinner following our worship on April 30, and a keepsake book that we are compiling of writings and photographs of active members of this Church to commemorate our ministry together.
Anything that is done in God’s name and that contributes to His glory is always worthwhile. There are things that this Church has done for this community that are not duplicated anywhere else, and generations past and future benefit. The ministry that we have shared in this Church is truly something to celebrate, and the legacy of faith and service that has been the hallmark of this congregation will continue on for all time and eternity.