Houston County Courier - Local News
Stories Added - October 2009
Copyright 2009 - Polk County Publishing Company
“Blood of Life and Source of Strength”
Houston County Courier - October 2009
By Suzanne Steed
More than three centuries ago many churches began as invisible gatherings.
These gatherings made it possible to express a unique and empowering form of religion that incorporated spiritual traditions brought to America and held onto silently with a great sense of need.
Time passed and worship became more open and influenced by Christianity with the church becoming the light of illumination to give its people direction.
This was a place of encouragement and a place of refuge, a safe place to worship. One could express themselves emotionally and fervently.
The message was usually simple but preached hot and straight.
Today, many churches in the community have retained the spirit of times gone by.
The worshipers are responsive with real feedback and interchange between the preacher and the audience.
The church plays a central role in the community giving the member the courage to speak and express themselves to an audience as well as someone to lean on.
Many of those who have held public office, entertainers, businessmen and women and activists are given the opportunity to exercise their “gifts” in the church.
This gathering of photographs represents Churches of many decades ago. Times were not ideal but within the walls of the churches hope dwelled.
The family gathered here where spirituality worked as a protective factor against many near- unbearable forces.
The architecture of each church is spiritual art in itself and when coupled with all the thoughts and prayers of the multitudes that attended throughout the years, along with their dreams and aspirations, hard work when the wind was not behind them, and yet kept holding on to hope, is a great testimonial of spirit for all times.
Photographer, Larry Meyer, has passionately photographed the Churches of Houston County over the last several years.
His collection includes churches that are active on a weekly basis as well as those on a yearly basis and those that are only remembered for their service over the years. All are precious memories.
A selective photographic essay of Meyer’s 1930s churches will be presented in the Lobby of the Crockett Civic Center beginning Oct. 16 at the opening of PWFAA’s ‘To Kill a Mockingbird.”
Meyer’s images transcend the architecture of the churches and are thought provoking.