I opened my recently acquired paperback copy of Call to Commitment, by Elizabeth O'Connor, which tells the first published story of the first decade and a half of The Church of the Saviour in Washington, D.C. It opens with the following affirmation about the nature of the Church:
The brownstone house in Washington, D. C. that has looked on so much of our life together has a small brass plaque to the left of its door. It reads:
HEADQUARTERS OF THE CHURCH OF THE SAVIOUR
Strangers read it and ask if we have other churches in other cities or if we plan to start a new denomination. To those of us who worship here on a Sunday morning, the sign is a reminder that we are also the church during all the hours of the week-in the neighborhoods where we live, in our homes, in offices and factories-for "the place whereon you stand is holy ground." We did not know on the day that sign went up what forms the church would take, but we did know that it would exist not only in a building.
I immediately realized how timely these words, which I first read in the summer of 1976, are for me today, 26 and a half years later. To say: we are also the church during all the hours of the week-in the neighborhoods where we live, in our homes, in offices and factories-for "the place whereon you stand is holy ground" is also to pronounce a blessing upon the possibilities for the "electronically connected Church". Not that I am pronouncing it as a spiritual panacea, or a "specially" holy place, but as an EXTENSION of holy ground.....where pieces of our being can gather.....and where the whole is much greater than the sum of the parts. The "Smart Mobs" idea in a theological community allows for the envisioning and embodying of "being the Church in our homes, offcies, and factories/workplaces" in additional , heretofore unseen and unanticpated places.