So right from the word go, allow me to clarify what may happen to be a perception as you read this; I didn’t set out to do this shoot so I could write this blog. Neither did I write this because I did this shoot.
Hi guys. It’s been quite some time.
Recently, I grabbed my camera bag, fueled my car, picked up a friend and set off looking for something, anything, that would be worth shooting. Almost two hours later, sixty kilometers (38 miles) away from home in a little town called Outjo, I spotted this old almost broken down church building. Instantly it drew my attention and we drove into the yard. Although the doors falling apart, they were still held by a lock, which meant I couldn’t go inside (not really. All the windows were broken so to me that meant I could jump in. I mean, who wouldn’t think that? HAHA). Well, so I did or didn’t, if doing so is gonna get me into trouble. On being inside I realised it wasn’t anything it was on the outside. The smell of bird dropping. The pealing paint. The cracking walls. The dirty floors. The lifting roof. The broken bulbs. The loosely hanging fan. Utter deterioration….and all these stirred up a mix of emotion in me.
Could this be a true depiction of what the church has become? Attractive and inviting on the outside but a complete mess and undesirable on the inside. Could this be retelling the story of why Jesus had to turn the tables upside down in the temple? Because of the uglyness he found inside? Greed. Image above everything. Are we focused on looking beautiful but forgetting to really be the church? A place of hope. The uglyness. Spraying cologne on a rotting corpse.
Or, could this be the true depiction of what church should be? Attractive and inviting from the outside but messy on the inside. Messy because it’s meant to be a place for the messed up people. A place they could come to and be real with themselves, real with other people and real with God. A place where we get cleaned and the mess remains.
From a cynical view point, the former is true but so is th later, from an artistic point. However, whatever the case, this religion needs a SAVIOR.