“Turning the other cheek” redefined

Out in western Nebraska, near Ogallala, there is a very peculiar church that seats 75 Catholics and 75 Protestants. 

Last month my wife and I drove from Omaha to Colorado. Along the way we passed near a town called Keystone, home to a little church called the Little Church. It was built in 1908, thanks to some local girls who held bake sales to raise the money. At the time (and still today, maybe) the town wasn’t big enough for both a Protestant and a Catholic church, so Pope Leo XIII granted a dispensation for the local faithful to build a joint church.

The church has a Catholic altar on one end and a Protestant altar on the other; the pews have reversible backs that can be moved depending on which service is going on.

The last regular services were held in 1949, but the Little Church is open to visitors by appointment. A friend of mine has driven to Keystone to see this church. He says there is a sign on the door that reads, “If you want to see the Church, come to the post office and ask for the key.”

Art ad Liturgy - Dual church in Keystone Nebraska - Catholic altar end.JPG

Art and Liturgy - Little Church at Keystone, Nebraska - dual church Catholic and Protestant


Both images by Ammodramus (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

One comment

  1. My family and I went to see this unique church a few years ago. The person who unlocked it for us was so pleasant – and very pleased to have visitors. As I recall, the pews were made by a company that made street car seats, so they were used to making seats with backs that could be moved.

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