11/9/22: Peace Church

One of our recent candidates for Interim said in passing that “Peace Church” was a big name. Well, I thought, so is “Church of Christ”. But it got me thinking. What does it mean to be “The Ashland Peace Church”??

Brad Roupp made the sign of “peace” in both Arabic & English during a period of anti-Islam activity in our country. I took it as admonishment to any who thought an Islam-American was less than a Christian-American. In due time, some Jewish individuals felt slighted—why didn’t we also have “Shalom.” (In truth, there was not enough room, but that wasn’t the point.)

As time marched on, locals would refer to this location as “where the Peace Church is.” That was easier to say and more descriptive than “where the Congregational United Church of Christ is.” In truth, the word “peace” was a descriptor, based on a sign, like triangle park, e.g. rather than a judgement of the values of this place. While I think most of us agree that peace is a good thing and value it in its many forms, I doubt that locals assign the values of peace to this church any more than to any other local church.

And so we have become the Ashland Peace Church with our website ashlandpeacechurch.org.

It is a good message to passers-by and to ourselves. This past year has not felt very peaceful to many. But it is something for us all to embrace and aspire to.

May it be so!