There's hardly a large number of fledgeling New England churches looking to set up shop in a cheap location, nor can one just demolish a house of God to make room for a new CVS pharmacy. The solution, then, is to rent out the space to a business who can use it, with curious results.
Master An's Tae Kawn Do Academy is located in Bedford, New Hampshire, just past the Everett Turnpike on the toll-skipping route between Manchester and Nashua. I stopped there on a Sunday to take some pictures.
As you can see, the door has been covered with a painting of traditional Eastern dragons, and the tall side windows painted with Chinese characters. I sadly did not get a chance to go inside and see how they had remodeled the main hall (if at all).
Afterward, I remembered that New Testament story about Jesus going into the temple and driving away all the peddlers and shopkeepers who were selling their wares there. If doing business in the Lord's house is wrong, then is it still wrong if the congregation has moved to a new location? When does a church stop being a church? (Think about this one for a minute.) If the congregation moves for a few years and then comes back, is the church still sacred ground while the congregation is gone? Is there a ceremony that happens after a church is shut down to desanctify the building? Or will a church always be a church long after the congregation has moved on to a large suburban location with a two-acre parking lot and a brand-new LED sign?
Other Uses for Old Churches I'd Like to See:
- Movie Theater
- Glow-stick Rave Venue
- Family Fun Center
- New location for the Bradford Junction
- Water Park
- Go-kart Amusement Area
- Really big Goodwill/Salvation Army
- Used Car Lot
- Studio Apartment
- Miniature Golf Course in which the player needs to hit the ball through the front door and out the back to win a free game
- CVS Pharmacy