Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Speaking of Churches...

While waiting for a friend to build a small fence in the back yard for Jane to run around in, I've spent the past couple of days walking her into exhaustion so she doesn't go crazy in the new house. Early this morning, on our hour-long walk, I noticed an interesting sight on a relatively nondescript office building in that section of Washington Avenue that alternates Commercial to Residential at random intervals. A plain white wooden sign in black letters read "Bethany Romanian Pentecostal Church."

My first thought was that I never knew there was a Romanian community in Waco, much less one sizable enough to merit a church, and a Pentecostal church at that. I then questioned my spelling abilities (which are impeccable,) and wondered if the way you spell the word indicating someone's origins are from Romania is"R-O-M-A-I-N-I-A-N." This made sense in my head because I know of many small churches out in the country whose names derive from a particular book of the Bible they would like to be identified with. There are Berean Baptist churches, because the Bereans were those in the New Testament held up by Paul as an example of not taking him at his word, but of diligently studying the scriptures to see if he was speaking truth. Not too far from the place I grew up is a Corinthian Baptist Church. They named themselves this because the Corinthian church in the New Testament spoke in tongues, and they speak in tongues as well. Of course they probably haven't quite figured out that the church in Corinth gave Paul more grief than all the others, but that's neither here nor there.

My supposition, then, became that the church down the road from my house wasn't a gathering place for Christians whose roots are in Romania, but rather named after the book of Romans. This pentecostal church was Roman-ian. But I came back to earth and realized that Romanian actually was the proper spelling to describe the people from Romania. A Romainian church would have something to do with a particular type of lettuce, and I couldn't quite figure where the significance in that would be.

I lauged out loud at what was going on in my head. Jane looked up at me like I was an idiot, but she loves me anyway.


Aaron said...

On several occasions I have passed by the "Ukranian Pentecostal Church" in Lexington. I'm pretty sure it's not named after any biblical person, city, or book. The building is quite large, too. It's odd to think that Lexington, Kentucky, has a Ukranian population large enough to merit an entire Ukranian church, and a pretty big one at that.

But there is one thing Waco and Lexington have in common: colleges. It's just a conjecture, but perhaps international students at Baylor and UK have something to do with these churches.

jenA said...

well, people have said the same thing about Muslims and Michigan. It's funny where people congregate.