Skyscraper Temple For Krishna Planned

January 11, 2017 by: Ben Heimsath

“Let the world see the magnificence of Indian culture and heritage.” That’s the last line in a promotional video for the skyscraper temple now in the planning stage. The location in the Northern Inda Braj region is associated traditionally with Krishna. So it makes sense that this audacious enterprise would be devoted to the Lord Krishna. Once completed, this towering temple will be, according to ... Read More

Holy Place / temples

Clear Lake Islamic Center - Learn! Play! Pray!

December 27, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

Nearby the Johnson Space Center, and neighboring the Bay Area Unitarian Universalist Church, the Clear Lake Islamic Center is growing. The congregation began in an old storefront in 1996. Three years later, they recruited an Imam, Shaykh Waleed Basyouni and a year later, they purchased 2.5 acres and began planning to build. The current construction, nearing completion, will fulfill a four-phased ... Read More

Holy Place / Worship Space

A Turning Point for Turning Point International Church

December 16, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

Sometime between June 2014 and December 2015, the Turning Point International Church reached a turning point. The ministry shed its image of a rugged old country church and replaced it with an upscale look that reflects its international vision. This facelift probably didn’t break the bank, but it’s a wonder what a new roof, a new coat of plaster, the thoughtful application of new colors can do! ... Read More

Worship Space / Holy Place

If Neanderthals Had Religion Did They Also Build Temples?

December 11, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

I was intrigued this summer to learn of a 175,000 year-old site deep in a cave in France that shows evidence of building by Neanderthals. Once considered primitive pre-humans, recent discoveries show Neanderthals, extinct for 40,000 years, were relatively sophisticated contemporaries of early homo sapiens. Now there’s serious discourse about the possibility Neanderthals had religion. If they did, ... Read More

Religious / Holy Place

Rally at Mosque Demonstrates Support

December 05, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

It’s distressing these days that bad news, even fake news get spread all over, while really good news seems to gets lost or sinks below waves of acrimony and vitriol. This weekend, however, a truly heartening event bobbed up high enough to get noticed. The Houston Press ran a feature about a crowd gathered outside a mosque in Houston to demonstrate their support!  The group of several dozen ... Read More

Religious / Holy Place / Sacred Architecture

Two Churches Break Barriers in Response to Tragedy

December 03, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

The image of the charred church became another celebrated moment in our historically acrimonious presidential election. Just days before voting, “Vote Trump” was spray painted on the side.  But after the national press left, their were serious issues for local residents.  The Hopewell Missionary Baptist Churchwas virtually destroyed.   The response to the torching of a historically African ... Read More

Holy Place / Religious

Christmas for Erica and Elias Memorial

December 01, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

It’s after Thanksgiving, so we can expect more and more decorations in the next few days and weeks before Christmas. Our local memorial is already preparing for the season. I’ve been recording this suddenly sacred site where family members regularly tend to the two crosses. At this location, over ten years ago, two young cousins, Erica Vasquez, and Elias Sanchez were killed by a drunk driver.   ... Read More

Holy Place / Suddenly Sacred / Memorial

Boston Diocese Gets Sweet Deal in the Seaport District

November 26, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

This summer we happened upon two churches that seemed to symbolize the best and the worst of urban redevelopment. I quickly found out that they are, in fact, the same church! The origianal Chapel of Our Lady of Good Voyage was constructed in 1949 to serve a congregation of sailors and others in the maritime industry. It is about to be demolished. The old port activities have been replaced by high ... Read More

Chapels / Holy Place / Worship Space

Congregation Better Than Ever After Fire

November 22, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

The restoration of a synagogue in Manhattan was nearing completion in 2011 when a fire raged through the construction site, destroying the interior, collapsing the roof, and destroying most of the historic details and stained glass. Within months, the Kehilath Jeshurun congregation and its associated school chose to rebuild, bigger and better than before. The decision to rebuild and expand has ... Read More

Holy Place / Worship Space / Historic Preservation

Discovering Mt. Pilgrim in My Own Backyard

November 18, 2016 by: Ben Heimsath

I don’t have much information about the Mt. Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church in Fayetteville, Texas. But today, as I pulled into the gravel driveway in front of the historic church, I knew that was my own fault. You see, I grew up in this small town, spending my middle school and early high school years as a resident of Fayette County and attending the Fayetteville School. My parents still live ... Read More

Holy Place / Worship Space / Historic Preservation