Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Big and small

I came across a thought-provoking article on the National Association of Church Design Builders' blog recently. It asks "Where did the church library go?" The answer is interesting and encouraging -- raising questions about location and functionality and audience. The conclusion states:
...perhaps the church library isn’t lost after all – it’s just changing to fit the demands and expectations of the ever-evolving congregation. And it still remains a source of source education and encouragement.
That's a great affirmation of church libraries from the people who build church buildings.

What really knocked me over, though, was the illustration that went with the piece showing the Granger Community Church Commons. According to the construction company that built it,  "The Granger Commons Addition at Granger Community Church includes a dining establishment open 7 days a week, a bookstore/gift shop, and plenty of room to relax and unwind with a fireplace, seating areas, and free WiFi."  Maybe, I thought,  there's a library in there too-- at  12,300 square feet, my whole church could fit inside the Commons area. (In fact a search of the GCC website for "library" found no results. :-(

What a vast spectrum is represented within the term of "church library!"  From a few  books on hand-me-down bookcases maintained by a faithful volunteer using pencil and paper to gleaming resource centres with paid staff and electronic resources circulated with state-of-the-art technology.   And yet all trying to serve their respective congregations faithfully.

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