There are a lot of stories within the walls of Hope Lutheran Church. Even the building itself tells a story, from the Sunday school drawings in the foyer to the deep, timeworn patina on pews that have witnessed a century of Sunday services. When Hope was built, the surrounding community was heavily Scandinavian and German Lutheran; Hope essentially functioned as a community center as well as a house of worship. Hope’s congregation used to be much bigger; these days, although it’s dwindled in size, people still fill the space with laughter, tears, and most importantly, stories. This is one of them. This is life with Hope.
Grace nearly jumped out of her shoes when she noticed a little girl sitting under her desk.
Footsteps sound different in old churches. They seem so much more resonant, Grace thought as she failed to walk softly down the long, wood-paneled hallway. She had hardly slept the night before. She had moved into her new apartment near the church a few days earlier, and had barely unpacked. She nudged the swinging door with her foot, wedging herself and her heavy box clumsily through. No one appeared to be in the main office. Grace released her box on the desk with a weighted thud, and looked around. more »