[first sunday at bestuzheva]
I still forget and out of a 17-year-old habit want to call the new Church Studentska. That was the name of the street where we were located and it means Students’ street. Now we are located at 2B Alexandr Bestuzhev Street.
During the first part of this past week, everyone who could pitched in to help with packing up everything at the old Church and then on Wednesday everything was transferred to the new ministry center.
On Saturday, we came to clean the place and also prepare the sanctuary. We now have three big meeting rooms. Today we were in the “Upper Room” aka the sanctuary on the second floor. It’s small, but it was just enough.
Here’s what our big sanctuary looked like on Wednesday when everything was moved. Drums, bikes, the cross, benches and the couch… all in a pile.
Since this building is brand spanking new, everything had to be cleaned. I got to clean windows which is something I enjoy doing – washing windows and painting walls are two of my favorite things to do when it comes to household stuff.
This morning, we came to the Church, practiced (in the meantime figured that we better close the windows on one of the sides of the Church since we’re quite loud even without microphones due to semi-empty room’s acoustics), and waited who would show up.
Actually… quite a lot of people did show up. All those who were faithfully coming to our Church all these years came. Granted, for some it was harder to get to the new place, so they will probably go to mom’s Church, but since both of the Churches are Nazarene, I don’t see a problem in it. As long as they have a place to worship God together, everything is good – even though we would miss them.
I stood in front, singing, and every once in a while a thought popped into my mind… “This is not too bad.”
I expected the new place to feel completely foreign but since I helped clean it up yesterday, it actually felt rather… homelike.
“Welcome to the Church of the Nazarene. Our Church can be your home.” That’s our motto for as long as I remember.
Church at Studentska felt like home because on many occasions, it was literally that. I had spent more time there than at home back when I was a kid. Church at Bestuzheva won’t be able to compete with that simply because I am not a kid anymore, yet I felt good. Once we get everything in place, figure out all the hows and whats… it will once again present opportunities for our younger generations to grow up there, have all the experiences that I’ve had at Studentska, and create unforgettable memories.
Today is a memory. Our first service at the new place.
One day we’ll look back at the pictures and laugh to ourselves, “Remember how we couldn’t figure out how to get there?” “Oh yeah, and remember how we tried to carry that couch?” “Remember that first service and how we sang without mikes, yet the acoustics were such that we did not need any microphones?”