In a church just south of Richmond, Virginia is a congregation of believers that not only bare their souls in worship but also their bodies. White Tail Chapel is a church that worships in the nude. Clothes are not mandatory for anyone; from the pastor to the congregation many of the worshipers are naked and not ashamed.
The church’s leader, Pastor Allen Parker, says it has never been about clothes with God. Parker says it is all about leading his flock down the path of righteousness while baring his soul to Christ. He said God is not concerned with the outward appearance; instead he is more concerned with souls.
One member named Katie said she wasn’t into nudity when she first attended. However, she met a man named Robert Church there and quickly fell in love with both the resort and Robert. They got married right at White Tail Chapel and have been loyal followers together ever since. Robert and Katie say the church has been like a family to them. It’s more of a Christian community without the pretense of a traditional style church. Katie said she feels as if she can turn to anyone in the church or resort and they would be there for her.
White Tail Chapel is a part of the White Tail Nudist Resort. Members of White Tail Chapel say they love not having to worry about finding something to wear to Sunday services. They explain that contrary to what some think it has nothing to do with being sexual, rather it is all about being free from judgments of society. There is never any pressure to be anything other than your authentic self.
Pastor Parker says if God made people in the nude how can it be wrong? Katie’s husband, Robert, said without being bogged down with material things people are more open to speaking and hearing the word of God. The congregants come to find inner peace and Pastor Parker feels it all starts with people learning to accept themselves. Parker said everyone is human with scars and other physical flaws. They have to learn to love and accept even their blemishes.
One woman who heard people criticize the fellowship said that Adam and Eve walked in the Garden of Eden naked before God and had no shame. This onlooker believes the pastor is brave to bare it all to reach the lost. She said she has no clue if nudist colonies were around in the days of Christ but knows there were things that Christ would do that the religious community would not do and condemned him for doing. This woman concluded by saying she would never recommend a nudist church to a person that is not nudist but she wanted to make it clear that only God can know the heart of a person so she does not condemn them.
Another man said what people fail to understand is that this church is located in a nudist colony. These people are used to the idea of being nude and going to church without clothes is not a big deal. It might be different if they were attending a public church in a common neighborhood naked but that is not the case.
Whether or not people agree with Pastor Allen Parker’s theory, he leads is a church in Virginia that not only bares their soul in worship but also their bodies. White Tail Chapel is located in White Tail Nudist Resort and believes clothes are not important for worship; from the pastor to the congregation many of the members attend worship service in the nude. White Tail Chapel is the church where the members are literally naked and not ashamed.
By: Cherese Jackson (Virginia)