Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Church in the Swimming Pool

This blog has been somewhat silent of late.  It's not that nothing has been happening in Hiragishi.  Rather things have been such for us that there has been no time to pen the latest news.  One of the challenges for the church as we look ahead to next year is to find a venue suitable for holding our worship services after we move out of our house in March.  That is easier said than done.  We have shared before that Hiragishi is an area which has many associations with the dead.  There is a very large cemetery opposite our house.  There are a number of temples.  And such halls as there are tend to be used for funerals.  So there are few suitable places to rent as a space for a worship service.  Even the crematorium used to be located in Hiragishi.  And that, believe it or not, has a connection with a place we used for our service the other Sunday. 
What was once the crematorium is now the local swimming pool - a great place, with both a 50m and 25 pool.  When we first moved to Hiragishi we noticed that there were a couple of meeting rooms but at the time we had decided to use our house for the worship service so did not need to investigate using one of these rooms for that purpose.  Also, we were not sure how people would feel meeting at the swimming pool!  But now as we think about next year, we thought it would be good to experiment with some places as a one-off to see how they are.  We rented one of the rooms at the pool.  They had no problems with us having singing.  In fact they were very helpful.  It seemed to work well as a venue (if a little hot inside the room!)  Comments have already been passed that we are well set up for an impromptu baptism were we to meet there.  The room was located quite far away from other parts of the pool complex so we did not feel in any way that we were having a worship service at the pool.  We will try some other possible venues too over coming weeks and trust that in time we will be led to the right place for the church.

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