Sunday, September 5, 2010

first visit: Sept 5th 2010 Church of the Brethren

10:30 am sunday
Pittsburgh Church of the Brethren
3503 Beechwood Blvd, Pittsburgh PA 15217

I chose this as gatherings' first place of worship because my mother was raised Church of the Brethren. It is also appropriate, I learn this morning, because the building is multifaith and multinational in purpose. On alternate days and times, it houses two additional congregations, one of them Lithuanian. (Baltic characters boldly don one interior wall.) Thankfully this and other small signs like this add up toward confirmation that my actions are not out of place. See, my drive to take on this project comes largely from the fact that I am daring myself to do it.

I settle into my pew at 10:33 and the service starts immediately—to the second. It dawns on me that they had been waiting for me to arrive.
During celebrations and concerns I receive the warmest welcome and support from Pastor Joel Wilcher and his small but strongly present congregation when I introduced myself and my project. Thank you. More remarkable than the fact that I can count the number of worshipers using the fingers on my two hands, is that upon leaving, I can probably provide you with the first names of each.

The sermon's focus on honoring humility carries true in this congregation, even in the hymnal melodies expressed in pure a cappella, sans the fanfare of organ.

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