I had lunch at an interesting place today in Eagle, Idaho. As you can see from the photo it looks like a building many Christians use for Sunday morning meetings. Look closely, though and you can see something is amiss. It used to be a clubhouse for the Baptists, but it isnâ€™t any longer. Observe the sign in the front that says Rembrandtâ€™s. (Yes, I know it is a bit small to readâ€¦ sorry!) Inside, the entire facility has been converted into an upscale combination coffee shop and art gallery. The food was amazing and the ambiance delightful.
But wait, thereâ€™s more. A group of believers went together to buy the building, refurbish it and open it as a commercial establishment. But the proceeds from this restaurant/gallery go to support a youth center nearby that is an old converted fire station. Here kids can find tutors, recreation and people who care about them.
What an amazing combination. I was blessed to hear the story and inspired by those who were so proactive about their faith, their generosity with the community and their creative way to finance a youth center that doesnâ€™t have to rely on donations.
And this has become one of the most popular eating places in town, with a full parking lot when we arrived at 11:30 on a Thursday. I think I want to nominate this as best use of a previously owned religious establishment for 2005. Any other nominations?