Treasured or Abandoned

June 3rd, 2019


Two churches stand out in my mind from our explorations today, Old Mount Zion Baptist Church in Albany, GA and the Holt Street Baptist Church in Montgomery, AL.

Mt. Zion is connected to the Albany Civil Rights Movement Museum.  It is beautifully restored and hosts the Freedom Singers weekly, led by Rutha Mae Harris, one of the original Freedom Singers.  Ms Rutha and a friend joined our tour today to teach us songs that inspired and encouraged not just our group but many activists historically and currently.

The Holt Street Baptist Church, on the other hand, is abandoned.  The congregation is still active, but is now worshiping at another location.  This historic building is in desperate need of repair.  It has broken and boarded windows.  We were only able to view it from the exterior and reflect upon the beauty and utility that once was.

Both of these building witnessed important events of the Civil Rights era, yet one is treasured and one abandoned.  This is a little like the way we treat the events.  Some of us have great respect for the people and the sacrifices.  Others do not understand the importance, or worse, have chosen to work toward the dismantling of the very rights these citizens worked so hard to gain.  Segregation, in another form, is still a reality today.  Many citizens of the United States have had their voting privileges blocked and there are some who are working hard to manipulate the vote in their favor.

I love beautiful churches.  They draw me closer to Christ.  It is sad to see us abandon not just the buildings, but the values that the Church is called to uphold.


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