an epic welcome

Everyone over at SALT is loving the welcome statement adopted by Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Community in Daytona Beach, Florida.  

Jon Acuff, author of Stuff Christians Like, said this about their radical, quirky, and thought-provoking statement: "Bravo to Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Community! This should be made into a poster and hung in church offices around the world."

So, without further adieu, here it is: 

We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, gay, filthy rich, dirt poor, yo no habla Ingles. We extend a special welcome to those who are crying new-borns, skinny as a rail or could afford to lose a few pounds.

We welcome you if you can sing like Andrea Bocelli or like our pastor who can’t carry a note in a bucket. You’re welcome here if you’re “just browsing,” just woke up or just got out of jail. We don’t care if you’re more Catholic than the Pope, or haven’t been in church since little Joey’s Baptism.

We extend a special welcome to those who are over 60 but not grown up yet, and to teenagers who are growing up too fast. We welcome soccer moms, NASCAR dads, starving artists, tree-huggers, latte-sippers, vegetarians, junk-food eaters. We welcome those who are in recovery or still addicted. We welcome you if you’re having problems or you’re down in the dumps or if you don’t like “organized religion,” we’ve been there too.

If you blew all your offering money at the dog track, you’re welcome here. We offer a special welcome to those who think the earth is flat, work too hard, don’t work, can’t spell, or because grandma is in town and wanted to go to church.

We welcome those who are inked, pierced or both. We offer a special welcome to those who could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down your throat as a kid or got lost in traffic and wound up here by mistake. We welcome tourists, seekers and doubters, bleeding hearts … and you!

Tell us, what do you think?  Do you like it?  Do you love it?  Does it leave something to be desired?  Does your church have a welcome statement?  Something printed in the bulletin or read from the pulpit?  Tell us, tell us, tell us, we want to know...

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Thanks to Ramesh NG for this colorful and quirky welcome sign.