WATERTOWN, Conn. -- Christ Episcopal Church in Watertown has seen everything, from baptisms to weddings to funerals, but after centuries of services, it's saying goodbye.Read it all here.
But worshippers at the church, which can be seen from anywhere on the Watertown Green and dates back to the 18th century, were told Sunday that the church is closing.
"It's pretty much part of Watertown," resident Judy Charbonneau said. "It's been here for years."
The decision to close the church came from the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut.
"There was, like, five or 10 minutes of, 'Oh my God,' and suddenly, 'OK, what are we going to do next?'" said the Rev. Stanley Kemmerer.
"We're closing access to a building for fiscal prudence, and at the same time are working with the faith community of 30 or so folks to discern their next steps as a group in a variety of possible formations and settings," the diocese said in a statement.
"It's simply that the congregation has not grown rapidly enough in a short time to be where it needed to be to take things over," Kemmerer said.
Kemmerer said it costs about $150,000 a year to run the church.
He said the church had split off from the main congregation because of the national Episcopal Church's stance on gays and other issues. When that happened, he said, there were about three parishioners left. Now there are about 40.
The church would need more than 200 to be able to make ends meet, Kemmerer said. He said he plans to make that happen, even if it's under a different roof.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
From here. And think about it.