Well, after struggling to find an evening service that wasn’t going to be “take your zombie to church” night, but still allow time to pick Farmergirl up from her Winter Weekend event with the Episcopal youth, we’re planning to go to the 6pm service at the Spokane Valley Church of the Nazarene in the Spokane Valley.
Among other lovely things, they say the following on their website:
Use of Church Facilities
Our facilities on Sullivan are for the benefit of the community. If you need a place for community or family events, call about scheduling. God has graciously provided the beautiful buildings and we want to use them for the benefit of all in the community.
I don’t have any particular follow-up thoughts on this statement, except that it’s always refreshing to see a church open to the community beyond the congregation.
The evening service is kind of a strange one. It’s not listed on the current website, except in the scrolling box on the home page. But it’s listed on the old website which I had found by googling “spokane church evening service”. The 2005 description about singing old hymns holds true. We were–by decades–the youngest people in attendance.
The pastor spoke on several topics. He spoke about the evening service, and how Sunday evening services used to be times of outreach, and how Sunday evening television largely detracted from that. He told the congregation about the vibrant services in and around the community–mostly in nursing homes and small groups–that were led by members of the church. He said that the service we were in was obviously serving a need, but that he wouldn’t necessarily be in attendance every week.
While he was out on that set of eggshells, he pitched the Lenten series/Holy Week observations that the church is trying this year. He acknowledged that these were not particularly Nazarene practices, but that it was his observation that the Holy Spirit draws people to the church during this season, that the largest “denomination” in the US is “lapsed and nominal Roman Catholics,” that liturgical folks who are no longer active in their home parishes often darken the doors of other churches during Holy Week, and that the SVCoN was going to be ready for them.
He then preached on Acts 6:1-7, and how character always makes itself an issue, that having wisdom and being spirit-filled are required in all church leadership roles, and how the character of the church and her body is evident in how they treat “the little, the least, the lost, and the lonely.”