By Rosalie Tirella
I took Jett and Lilac out after supper yesterday and saw Spencer’s first responders unhooking the thick fire hoses that ran about a quarter of a mile from the town library, up Main Street and to the old Spencer church, now in ruins. It was a long afternoon for the guys I saw. The First Congregational Church on Main – built in the 1860s – one of the architectural jewels of our downtown – was engulfed in flames during this afternoon’s wild thunderstorm. The charred steeple crashed to the ground, the church organ’s tall pipes melted in the heat, the food in the food pantry was lost. The church’s demise is temporary – a resurrection is certain.
It was a grand old church! At the end of my day, driving home from running CECELIA in Worcester, it always caught my eye. I looked out my car window and stared – upwards. The big, white church – even whiter when the sun shone on it – claimed the highest parcel of Spencer land – it was elevated! Because it was the house of God, built in the days when the house of God was the most important house in town. This was true for all America – from New York City to Spencer. The church was built to always be “taller” than the bank building. Taller than town hall or city hall.
The First Congregational Church – the tallest edifice in Spencer – built on the crest of Main Street. Built on the top of the hill in the center of town because cross and cupola were once more important than cash and campaign slogans.
The Spencer firefighters, police officers and other town workers were calling it a day now. Everyone looked tired and a little disoriented. The air was still heavy with smoke, and when we got back home my clothes stank of smoke.
During our a.m. walk today I noticed that someone left/displayed this Gay Pride tee on a pallet by a store in our “plaza.” For the taking…or just a reminder? So Spencer!🌈 …I wonder how the Town of Spencer is marking the month, June, Gay Pride Month. I wonder how State Senator Gobi – now Governor Healey’s Rural Expert and a Spencer resident – WILL HELP/SUPPORT GAY FOLKS IN RURAL MASSACHUSETTS.