The city’s historic churches open their doors to the public during the tour

September 17 – Terri Hartman has lived in Redding all her life, and has walked the city streets countless times.

On those walks, she often passed an old church or two. It’s hard not to, with there seemingly one on every block.

While Hartman admired many of these churches, occasionally pausing to admire their beautiful architecture, she always looked at them from the outside. That is, until Saturday.

Hartman was one of dozens of curious locals who participated in a historic tour of the city church. The self-guided tour allowed the public to stop to visit 13 of the city’s historic houses of worship.

For Hartman, an artist, this was an opportunity to view some truly special, inspiring artwork.

“I came to see the stained glass,” she said. “I literally look at this painting here and say, ‘This is the painting I use in all my paintings.’”

Hartman said she was amazed by what she found during the tour, noting that the stained glass, murals and architecture she saw were amazing.

Carol Miller felt the same way.

She said she had visited most of the churches on the tour before, and was a member of one of them — Trinity Lutheran Church. But she couldn’t pass up another opportunity to check it out.

“This is so beautiful,” she said as she stood inside the sanctuary of Holy Cross United Methodist Church.

Miller said she especially enjoys seeing the different stained glass windows in churches, as well as their different historical architecture.

She added that Saturday’s sunny and mild weather made it an ideal day for a walking tour around the city.

The church tour was part of Reading’s 275th anniversary celebration. The Rev. Mandy Miller, pastor at Holy Cross and one of the organizers of the event, said it makes sense for churches to be included in this celebration.

“The city celebrates its history, and part of Reading’s history is its churches,” she said. “They’ve been here as long as the city.”

Miller said she was thrilled to be able to attract a wider audience to these historic churches, adding that many people do not usually get the opportunity to witness their beauty.

“We are open on Sundays, but maybe not on other days of the week,” she said.

While Miller was observing the other churches Saturday, speaking with visitors and answering questions, she said she was able to see the other churches during an introductory tour last week. I was blown away.

“I was struck by the uniqueness, they are all different, which is amazing,” she said. “The diversity of ancient churches reflects the diversity of the city.”

The churches included in the tour are:

– Holy Cross United Methodist Church.

– Christ Episcopal Church.

– Trinity Lutheran Church.

—Friends Meeting House.

-street. John Lutheran Church.

– Charis Community Church.

– Lighthouse Christian Academy.

– The First Unitarian Universalist Church.

– First Baptist Church.

– Spanish Pentecostal Church.

-street. Peter the Apostle Roman Catholic Church.

-street. Cyril and Methodius Roman Catholic Church.

—Bayer Chapel.

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