Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Church as a Sacred Ground

It is apparent that in the century we live in a new church being built is a rare occasion. Interestingly enough, in a number of countries in Western Europe we that many churches become theatres, apartments, clubs, coffee shops, bars, restaurants, even mosques. This is an unfortunate reality, which does not coincide with the theology and sacredness of these buildings and grounds, which have the ability and potential to bring us closer in communion with God. Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh explains the fact that a Church is a sacred ground, explaining

‘When we build a church or set apart a place of worship we do something which reaches far beyond the obvious significance of the fact. The whole world which God created has become a place where men have sinned; the devil has been at work, a fight is going on constantly; there is no place on this earth which has not been soiled by blood, suffering or sin.
When we choose a minute part of it, calling upon the power of God himself, in rites which convey his grace, to bless it, when we cleanse it from the presence of the evil spirit and set it apart to be God’s foothold on earth, we reconquer for God a small part of this desecrated world.
We may say that this is a place where the Kingdom of God reveals itself and manifests itself with power. When we come to church we should be aware that we are entering upon sacred ground, a place which belongs to God, and we should behave accordingly.’[1]

[1] Anthony of Sourozh, Creative Prayer, 2004, p.70. 

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