Monday, April 8, 2013

Chapel of Rest, Happy Valley, North Carolina

Generally when I go out on a day trip and find an interesting church to photograph, I can only take pictures of the outside. Most churches are locked up tight except for Sunday services due to vandalization. In fact, several rural churches near me have been set on fire in the past few months with one actually burning to the ground.

This is the Chapel of Rest up in the mountains between Wilkesboro and Lenoir. Built as an Episcopal chapel in the 1880's, it was deconsecrated in the 1970's and turned over to a local historical society. They fully restored the church and it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005 as an example of a 19th century Gothic Revival architecture.

It is open daily to visitors and can be rented out for weddings and family reunions. Twice a year, concerts are held in the sanctuary as it is acoustically perfect for music.

As I looked at the wooden pews, all I could think of was my aching back. And the parishioners sat on them for hours on end on Sundays.

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