Message from 1889 hidden in rafters at Trinity United Methodist in downtown Denver

9NEWS at 6 p.m. 3/2/17.

DENVER - If you've spent any time in downtown Denver, you've likely driven by Trinity United Methodist Church at 18th and Broadway. It's the church that sits right in the middle of tall buildings and busy streets.

It's really beautiful, on the outside and the inside, with more architectural features than your eye can keep track of. 

One of the church's most unique features is hidden behind a door, up a flight of stairs, in the rafters, in the attic, right above the pulpit and the choir loft.

A message was etched in pencil on those rafters, back on Jan. 20, 1889.

Most of the words are faded now, but based on what is left, the meaning behind it is clear. 

"Reader,

What have you done sine this church opened to make it a benefit to mankind? ... Do you allow the poor to enter this church with the same welcome as those in costly robes?"

"What it means to me is that this church has been here since December of 1888, ministering to the community, to its congregation, and this just reminds us (how we) should treat other people. Do we welcome the poor, and give them the same welcome as we do those people who are in costly robes?" Lynn Wilcockson, a church member and tour guide said. "I think it's relevant all the time, as to how we distinguish between groups of people. They're all important individuals in the sight of God."

The message also details the church's beginning:

"This church was built during AD 1887 and 1888, and was opened for worship and general service in December 1888. Henry A. Buchtel was the pastor during those years and Bishop H.W. Warren preached in the main audience room at the opening Sunday, December 18, 1888."

A few other pieces of handwriting are scattered throughout the rafters. 

Another message says:

"Feb. '82. Unemployment 10 percent. Rich are getting richer. Poor are getting poorer. Ronald Regan (Reagan) screwing up this country."

The rest are mostly names and signatures.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


JOIN THE CONVERSATION

To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment