Why is Lydia House is named Lydia House? Just who was this Lydia of the Bible? When I first came to Open Door Mission I decided to learn more about Lydia and possibly why a building was named for her. Lydia is one of the few woman mentioned in the Bible, that in itself makes her important. The more you learn about Lydia, a seller of purple, the more you understand why Lydia House is the perfect name for the building that serves the women and families at Open Door Mission.
Lydia was a successful business woman in the marketing and selling purple cloth. Purple cloth was reserved for only the upper status Romans, so she moved in business and aristocratic circles. It was unusual, for that time period, for a woman to fully and out rightly own her own home and business; so you get a sense of her character and abilities. When she heard the gospel preached she knew she had found salvation and was baptized. From that point on Lydia became a vibrant involved addition to the Apostles’ work. She used funds from her business to help those in need in the early church, especially widows and orphans. Her house was the beginning of the Philippian Church, as it was the meeting place in the early days of the church. Her hospitality was known far and wide, from missionaries for Christ, to weary travelers, her home was a safe refuge.
Lydia House at Open Door Mission is a haven of rest and renewal also. Women and families often come here broken and lost, looking for hope. Like the Lydia of old, Lydia House offers the gospel message of hope and new life in Christ. Here women and families find refuge to heal and recover, in safety. Their needs are met, whether food, clothes, prayer or encouraging words, God is nurturing the women of Lydia House through those He has called to serve there. Lydia House lives up to its name providing for all aspects of a woman or family’s needs; called by God to serve others and spread the gospel.