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Community & Worshipby Tessa Beauregard
One of my favorite activities at church is to share a meal with my church family on Wednesday nights. We catch up with one another, laugh and pray together, and enjoy the best gastronomic value in the whole of Connecticut, all in our own Marsh Building. Numerous events take place there—some ordinary, some routine, many life-transforming.
I love that space. It’s old and badly in need of repairs, but it has hosted some of the most powerful worship experiences of my life. Allow me to walk down memory lane and share, for a moment, a few special recollections with you.
When I first came to First Church, in 2001, we had a Saturday evening service with contemporary music, held on the lawn in the summertime and in Keith Jones Hall when the weather turned cold. This was already called the Wind service. It was small and directed at seekers and new Christians.
In time, some of our committed members asked for a different service, one more focused on an intimate experience of God and deeper in the study of His Word. Many of these members had young children who needed to go to Sunday school, but we did not have the resources to start an entirely new Sunday school.
So we made major changes to the Wind service, and moved it to Sunday mornings at 11:00, running concurrently with the traditional service, which would allow the children to attend Church School classes. We knew that if we did not do this, we would lose a lot of our younger families who were longing for a different kind of worship experience.
We never dreamed that God would bless this service with such growth. Over the years, I have met many new people who have joined us for worship at Wind: college students; young single men and women; families with children; middle-aged people with no children or grown children; folks from different cultural backgrounds. It’s a little like heaven in its diversity. We have learned to pray together, share the stories of our lives with each other, cry and laugh together, and draw nearer to God. What a glorious space this building is! Lives have changed here.
For years, this building has cared for us. It is time that we take care of it so that more glorious things can happen here.
Tessa Beauregard is a ministry leader at First Church.