Historic Chapel Opened August 8 Manhattan Project National Historic Park Lights For Peace Commemoration – Los Alamos Reporter
Los Alamos United Church/Courtesy Photo
BY GEORGIA STRICKFADDEN
On Monday, August 8, the Manhattan Project National Historical Park, Los Alamos Section, is rightly sponsoring a Lights for Peace Walk at Ashley Pond. “The event is designed to be a calm and introspective experience, aiming to give visitors the opportunity to walk the lit path in silence and have their own reflective experience based on their personal reasons for participating,” according to the release. August 2 press.
With that in mind, The Historic United Church, located at 2525 Canyon Rd, will also be open Monday evenings, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. It is two blocks from Ashley Pond.
The creators of the Los Alamos community 77 years ago, the same people who brought to fruition the devastating weapons of war used on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, also eagerly formed religious institutions. Church services and Sunday schools were held in any available space.
The symbol of a spiritual gathering place was so important to them that after the war ended, they insisted that the army provide a chapel around which to form their fledgling community, as there was none. here. The Army moved the Standard Issue Chapel from the closed complex of Bruns Military Hospital in Santa Fe to the 2500 block of the new Canyon Drive in Los Alamos.
With great fanfare and crowds, the chapel was dedicated when the army commander turned it over to the director of the Atomic Energy Commission for the new civilian community of Los Alamos. It was May 1947, two years after the atomic bombings in Japan. By the end of the year, AEC Chaplain Abram Sangrey had rallied a very willing population to form an ecumenical congregation, using the chapel as a unifying symbol. It has become Los Alamos United Church and a fitting place to contemplate the importance of Los Alamos during the first week of August.
In addition to worship services at 9:30 a.m. each Sunday, the historic Los Alamos United Church Military Chapel, now their church, is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Visitors are always welcome.
How to get to the United Church during road construction on Canyon Rd.