Every time I drive down Route 12 in West Boylston, Mass going north, and I go under the railroad tracks, I know that soon I will see one of he most amazing views I have ever seen. The car rolls on down toward the pristine blue Wachusett reservoir and we pass the tree line, and there she sits. Like on a pedestal set beside the water, the Old Stone Church sits like a monument to days gone past. The sight overwhelms me even as I type this short story. One of my favorite places on earth is this one:
So many memories, were do I start. In fall, we would spend hours down around her walls. throwing Frisbee, enjoying the amazing fall colors as they danced through the leaves of the sugar maples. In summer, the same, enjoying a good hot dog or two from the vendors that would set up at the rest area just to the right of this picture. Maybe we would watch a wedding taking place in the shadow of the church. Attending sunrise service on Easter Sunday on the outlet was always a treat.
But it wasn’t always so. This church was built in 1890 to replace the Baptist church, which had burned down. But 10 years later a dam was put up in neighboring Clinton to start filling in the Wachusett Reservoir, a supply of drinking water for Boston. The church was threatened, but many astute residents saw the beauty of the church, and that it would become a landmark, and pleaded with the Commonwealth to stop short of the church. Much of the existing town of West Boylston was submerged in the reservoir, but the church remained. What foresight by those people who saw the significance of this view!
I remember one particular Easter Sunrise service that was a turning point for my way of thinking. I had always been fairly pessimistic, and was one to poke fun and make cruel remarks unwittingly. My mouth was full of anger and chaos. When I got saved, that started to change. The Easter Sunday after I got saved I remember that it was a cloudy morning. There would be no sunrise to see, yet we would still have sunrise services. I remember talking to someone and saying “The sun will still come up, and will shine brightly. It’s just on the other side of the clouds” Too many, that just makes sense. But to me, that day, it was a revelation. The sun shines no matter what, and God is faithful to make that happen. It set my faith up on another level, and it has been growing ever since.
If you are ever near the central pat of Massachusetts, and you have not seen this amazing sight, it’s worth the drive. No gift shop, or fanfare. Just the beauty of a single church, set off in splendor, and standing the test of time.
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