The following was written in support of Church Alive, a focus of The First Church of Christ, Scientist, that explores the meaning and possibilities of awakening to the spiritual basis and impact of Church.

Welcoming visitors

You can read the full version of this blog by visiting christianscience.com/church-alive.

Why do visitors come to our church, and what will meet their human and spiritual needs? These are questions I ask myself frequently. There may be many answers. But as I visit congregations and lecture for branch churches, I’ve begun to think of people who visit our churches or attend talks as coming for comfort, forgiveness, and healing.

Some visitors seek comfort from grief, loneliness, stressful circumstances. Sometimes they seek comfort from condemnation, feeling condemned as sinners or as unworthy by former employers, family, another church, or maybe society in general. Perhaps they are condemning themselves for past mistakes and wonder if they will ever be free from self-recrimination and self-condemnation. 

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