Yesterday my family witnessed a wonderful event, the wedding of two who fell in love. It was a beautiful ceremony in a classic church venue. It was the joining of two families who already have a deep history together; My Beloved's family once again joined with mine.
I was fascinated by the architecture of the church. It was a Gothic style, possibly neo-Gothic, that took me back to the first church I attended as a boy. Although the style was similar, they are different. But they are similar in how they affected me. Churches have always seemed to have a power other buildings lacked. In years past their structure held the beliefs of the religion. In the Catholic religion, they always seemed as vessels of power. Their lofty ceilings and ornate decoration expressed what this religion was about.
I miss those days as I drive down a street and see all manner of nondescript buildings that are passed off as houses of worship. I suppose 'houses of worship' aren't the same as churches, at least for me. Any of these buildings lack the fundamental integrity of a true religion as they seem to have no basis of hierarchy. It seems that almost anyone can move into a building and preach, read from a bible or other book and claim to be a leader of a flock. I have often wondered what true authority do they have in a religious form? Who or what is their authorization?
Perhaps I am unduly critical of those establishments but in my mind they have little or no authority to establish a flock of believers. A building is just a building, I know but what they represent can be worlds apart.