Founded in 1799, the Barre Congregational Church has a long history of grappling with Jesus’ vision, message and mission. In recent years we have been identifying ourselves as “the church with the red doors.” The three sets of double red doors that grace the front of our meetinghouse are a constant reminder that it is our intention to practice our faith on both sides of these doors. Crossing the threshold of these doors reminds us that as Christians we attend to an inner journey and an outer journey. We believe both journeys are crucial to God’s vision of salvation, justice, and transformation for all creation. The prophet Micah writes, “And what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.” As a member of the United Church of Christ we are in covenant with other churches committed to discerning what is just and fair and to speaking words of justice to the wider community and ourselves. As a local church in a specific geographic location, regardless of which side of the red doors we find ourselves on, we extend kindness to all people believing they are created in God’s image and therefore deserving of God’s love, compassion and acceptance. Our ‘Covenant of Welcome’ articulates our desire to extend extravagant and radical welcome to all people wherever they are on life’s journey. To walk humbly with God we invite our church family to worship regularly, to engage transformative spiritual practices, and serve in the world outside our red doors.
As a local church we are bound together not by creed or doctrine but by covenant, a promise of the heart to journey together. Being church does not mean uniformity of belief, thinking or practice. We are free to disagree. We do encourage our members and friends not to take their faith and church community lightly. How can we not, when God’s truth continues to break forth in our lives and in our world.