*Sanctuary or Auditorium?*
A sore that has “festered” for years seems to have become more than an annoyance. In the past, various remedies have been presented and tried. Religious poultices, ointments, wraps and band-aids have been administered. What is the cause of the sore? It basically stems from the question, “Is the sanctuary sacred or is it merely an auditorium for the use of ministry?”
The annoyance that aggravates the question for some is when they see children running through the sanctuary chasing each other after the service, teens wearing earplugs connected to their smartphones during the service, and others doing their homework during the service. Yes, it is a matter of proper training regarding what is appropriate. And yes, it is a general matter of respect for the property of others. But the feelings of many go deeper than that. It is about whether this is God’s house and what can take place at His house. It appears that in most cases the inducement for this matter of concern is centered on children.
The debate continues. Sanctuary or Auditorium? Is the sanctuary too holy to allow for a crying baby, a running child, or teens who whisper and pass notes. Is it sacrilegious to move the chairs out of the room where you worshiped God on Sunday so that your basketball team can practice during the week? Is it sacrilegious to use the room where you sang, prayed, and heard the Word of God expounded on Sunday as an area for the women to have their weekly exercise classes? Should it be a Sanctuary dedicated only for worship to God on one or two days a week, or should it be an auditorium that is used daily throughout the week?