Monday, April 5, 2010

The Church Without a Name

Over the past 5 months I've participated in a lot of phone conversations on the church's phone line that went a bit like this:

Me: Comunidade de Cristo, may I help you?
Caller: Yeah, I'm calling about ______ that I heard about from _______. Where are you located?
(Note: The _____ can represent English classes, church events, worship services, a delivery, etc.)
Me: On the corner of X Avenue and Y Street, in between B Boulevard and C Avenue.
Caller: Ok, and what's the name of your church?
Me: Comunidade de Cristo....
Caller: Ok, well, thanks...
Me: But wait. Our name is not on the front of the building....
Caller: What do you mean?
Me: Well, you see, we've been remodeling our church building and...well...the name hasn't gone up yet.
Caller: do I know where it is?
Me: Well, it's next door to the aluminum store. It's a big white building with a green front.
Caller: Ok, green front.
Me: But don't come in through the front, come in through the side. The front is the auditorium, and during the week there is no one at that door. Come to the side gate.
Caller: Ok, is there a sign over the side gate?
Me: No.
Caller: Ok, well hopefully I'll find it anyway.
Me: Me too. (Hang up with my head hung in shame.)

For months we've been called "The Church Without a Name".

For weeks our members have been asking (read: bugging) us about how weird it is that our church doesn't have a name--and they don't even spend the day answering phone calls like I do! And we reply like this: "Well, we'd be happy to accept your donation for R$X to cover the cost of the letters. We'll have them up by Tuesday." You see, these things cost money, people!

Of course our church has a name. And anyone who knows the 10-year history of this church in this neighborhood knows we have a name, and that name is "Comunidade de Cristo".

But what about those who don't know our history? What about the newcomers, the parents of a teenage girl who came to pick up their daughter who was visiting a Bible study on a Saturday and started getting worried when they could not find this mysterious church, not to mention their daughter who was supposed to be inside?

Have I dramatized it enough for you???????????????

Well, my dear readers, you know me. And you know I am no bad news bear. So this post will likely end with some exciting news. I present to you:

The Building Formerly Known as the Church Without a Name

Igreja Comunidade de Cristo

And just a little reminder as to why this is all so exciting and blog-worthy (to me, anyway...)
You may call this BEFORE. I call this YIKES.

Special thanks to a handful of generous contributors who helped make the naming process possible. The money came from a few individual church members, as well as brothers and sisters from other congregations in Brazil who stayed in our building while on vacation and left behind some cash to help us out. Hooray!


T. Barbalho said...

cris! eu não sabia disso, ainda.
muito obrigado pela informação em primeiríssima mão.
saudades de todos vocês...

Lacy Almeda Hefley said...

Caramba! What an incredible transformation! It's BEAUTIFUL.

brent said...

finally... you're back... :)

Roy and Nell said...

The new sign looks great. I know this will encourage others to seek out what this building is all about. Love, Aunt Nell