Sacred Spaces of Hickory is a website created and designed by a community of Lenoir-Rhyne University students. We set out to document some of the spaces in and around the city of Hickory that might be considered "sacred."
Of course that term "sacred" presents some problems right away. Theologians and philosophers debate the meaning of the term, and within the Hickory community it has quite different meanings depending on who you ask. Even the choices that we made in choosing places hint at the difficulty of defining this seemingly simple term. The photographs above were taken at Moretz Stadium, the Zahra Baker All-Childrens' Playground, Exodus Missionary Outreach Church, Club Cabaret, the Plaza Latina, and Union Square - all places that some in Hickory consider sacred yet that at least on the surface share very little in common.
The purpose of this project, then, is to call into question the very notion of the "sacred." We hope to show how different scholars have thought about the meaning of the term "sacred" and to apply those definitions to spaces familiar to Hickory residents. Above all, we invite you to consider your own relationship to sacred spaces.
This site is divided into three main sections. Two sections feature analysis of and stories about spaces in the city of Hickory that we believe can be considered sacred, and we have divided these into the religious sacred and the secular sacred. The third section offers a reflection on the connections between these different places.
This project is made possible in part by a grant from the North Carolina Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. It is also made possible in part by funding from Lenoir-Rhyne University and the Applachian College Association.