Here author and former professor Robert McClory relays the stories of several Roman Catholic congregations and their experiences - both positive and negative - as they plan for and renovate their facilities. In one case, a small group of members resist the renovations and make their conflict public. Yet in another, the process used included lengthy conversations and in the process addressed concerns that congregation members had. The congregational issue at hand is change . . . changing of worship space, changing of hearts and minds, and how changing religious meeting places reflects congregational beliefs and theology of the past and present. Though this article is written from within a Roman Catholic perspective and context, congregations from other faith traditions can find something of value in it. The article provides brief case studies that can be gleaned for ideas and cautions for those considering renovation and remodeling.
Reviewed by Janet Hoover