Reimagining church buildings

As Christians, our approach to church buildings speaks volumes about our engagement with the world and those around us. Modern technology increasingly seeks to transcend place, but this sits uncomfortably with the scandalous particularity of the incarnation. Our God so loved the world – materiality and all – that he lived with and died for us at a particular time and place, literally ‘putting a stake into the ground’. This paper argues that, while the veneration of place does carry dangers, people and place are intimately and necessarily intertwined. Reflecting theologically on placedness frees us to see places in general, and buildings in particular, more in terms of opportunity than of irrelevance or threat.

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