Pilgrimage to the Stockbridge Boiler Room

After five hours on the road, we finally arrived at the Stockbridge Boiler Room, in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

It looked like…

A house.

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A big one, mind you.

With a garage in the back.

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Also a big one.

We knew we were late, so we tiptoed in sheepishly, only to be warmly welcomed.

“It’s the Canadians!”

Tim, the preacher, didn’t miss a beat, and got back to his sermon. Apparently he was used to interruptions, as his baby boy gleefully crawled around at his feet.

The garage was decorated like the prayer rooms we become familiar with, and was crowded with locals and visitors like ourselves.

After the service, I had questions. “How is this zoned?”

“It’s actually the church building, and the house is the parsonage. We had to make it wheelchair accessible and install a toilet.”

It’s a fascinating community configuration. The garage is the prayer room, accessible 24-7 with a door keypad. The house attached is the home base of the boiler room. Offices and meeting room on the main floor, and housing for interns and Vision students. “Boys on the main floor, girls upstairs.” Tim and Brooke, and Jordan and Charis, the elders of the community live a block or so away. A life of prayer and service in tight geographic proximity. The house also hosted a guest room. So after a late dinner of Spanish tapas (Kirk accidentally ordered a plate of plain cheese cubes for his supper) at a local eatery, we tucked ourselves in so we could be up in time for morning prayer.;

 

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