It reminds me of what St. Paul Presbyterian church has done here in Atlanta-- a PCA church plant, they first met for years without a building, and then had the oppotunity to buy "The Abbey," an old, beautiful gothic former church building in the Midtown area that had been used as a restaurant for many years. This year, we attended an Easter Sunrise service there on the first occasion of a St. Paul's worship service in the new building. Now they meet there every week, and plan to use the industrial-sized restaurant equipment for a soup kitchen. They are engaging the city community through their church, with ministries to AIDS patients and the poor. As Strauss writes:
The primary contribution churches can make to a renewed vision in and for city neighbourhoods is by being themselves. Let the church be the church – and let the reality of church life find expression in the buildings the church inhabits.