Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Advent Celebrates Love

The theme for the 4th Sunday of Advent is Love. The Tree of Warmth was dedicated during the offering so that the many scarves, hats and mittens could be removed and sent to Isaiah 58 ministries, not a minute too soon as the weather on the weekend was the coldest of the year. Many of the items were knitted by women in the newly formed Shawl Ministry Group.

One highlight of the service was the dedication of baby Peter and his parents, Sarah and Bryan. Peter managed to sleep through most of the morning, although Sarah and Bryan would probably prefer that he start sleeping that soundly at night! Peter was 6 weeks old on Sunday.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Book Club Meets at 6 North

The image is a little fuzzy, but when one forgets the camera, the wireless phone will do in a pinch. This morning 10 avid readers descended on 6 North Coffee House in the Central West End to discuss our selection for the month, Stuff White People Like. We quickly ranged into lots of tangent topics, and also enjoyed the wonderful breakfast croissants, pastry, chicken salad, and/or coffee that this place is famous for. It's the largest group we have had in 3-1/2 years of meeting. Next month we will meet on the 4th Saturday instead of the 3rd: January 24, same time, same place. As soon as the book is at Left Bank, I'll announce it on this blog.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Third Sunday of Advent: Joy

Joy is the theme of the third Sunday in Advent. The pink candle and the two previous purple candles shine in the sanctuary. We celebrate with song, bring offerings, and meet at the table. Our student associate pastor preached a moving sermon. The choir was harmonious.

Everyone present was asked to write down something that brings them joy on a strip of gold paper. These were collected along with the offering, and added to the straw in the manger.

Our Christmas special offering benefits the Mid America region. So far we have $97 and there will be two more Sundays to participate.

Upcoming Events
  • Saturday, Dec. 20, 10 a.m.-noon, Reading Circle at 6 North.
  • Sunday, Dec. 21, 5-8 p.m. open house at Jacque and Dave's.
  • Tuesday, Dec. 23, 7 p.m., Soul Care
  • Wednesday, Dec. 24, 6:30 p.m. Christmas Eve service followed by caroling on Flora Place and refreshments at Kreuger's.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Advent Event Releases Creativity

Thursday night we had an Advent Event for the entire family. We started with homemade chicken and noodles, followed by the Nativity Story, and then set out to construct gingerbread houses. One house, at left, became a church with a steeple.

Another house acquired a roomy extension, and dormer windows in the roof.

A dream of chocolate chips on the ridge of the roof, and an inviting walkway were features of this house.

A typical south St. Louis flat was the theme of this one. An M&M walkway is surely inviting!

Who wouldn't want to visit this beauty, with warm inviting windows and those red hot garlands on the roof to guide Rudolph and his reindeer crew?

Someone has a wildly creative imagination, from the Christmas tree on the upper deck to marshmallow smoke coming out of the chimney. Even those who don't usually feel creative had a good time and good fellowship tonight.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Peace Sunday in Advent

On this, the second Sunday in Advent, children during the Time of Wonder placed a manger, a sheep, a donkey and a a bird on the simple stable that is a focal point in the sanctuary. More figures will appear in the weeks to come.

Peace is the theme for this week in Advent. A second banner is hung in the sanctuary, and we sing, "peace is a ribbon that circles the earth.." as two candles are lit.

The Tree of Warmth has sprouted scarves, hats and mittens this week! The group of women who are forming the new Prayer Shawl Ministry decided to focus this month on items for the tree and at least four new hand-knitted scarves have appeared since Thursday! Items will be donated to Isaiah 58 for clients who can use them.

Upcoming items of interest:
  • Christmas special offering will be received on December 14 and 21. This offering helps support the ministry of our Mid-America Region of the Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. More information will be shared in worship on these dates.
  • Tuesday, December 9, 7 p.m., Soul Care for Advent.
  • Thursday, December 11, 6:30 p.m. Chicken and dumpling supper and gingerbread house making.
  • Sunday, Dec. 21, 5-8 p.m. Pastor's open house.
  • Wednesday, Dec. 24, 6:30 p.m., Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship and caroling on Flora Place, followed by cider and goodies at the Kreugers.
  • Elders Circle will not meet this month. In a special called meeting today, the elders voted to donate $6,000 from memorial funds they control to the Compton Cares Campaign when a CD matures later this month. Thank you, elders!
One final note: During 2008 Compton folk raised $420 toward a $50,000 pledge by the Christian Churches and United Churches of Christ in our Southeast Gateway Area to support a missionary couple in Haiti. A link to the blog by Patrick and Kimberly Bentrott is on the right side of this blog, just below the link to the Advent Devotional. Take some time to read the blog posts by Kimberly, a physician, and Patrick, who is working at the local seminary and teaching English in the school. When they left the U.S. this fall, they expected it would take them almost a year to absorb the culture, learn Creole, and become effective in their mission. NOT! A cursory read shows they are already in the thick of things and already making a difference. The blog is honest, about the ups and downs of being in a foreign culture, facing incredible poverty, and trying to do something with almost nothing. In 2009 we will have additional opportunities to support this mission financially, but for now, read the blog and if you are so moved, leave a comment on it, or e-mail the Bentrotts on the link they provide. I can imagine that being so far from home and yet knowing that people here are following their story, praying for them, and giving them feedback would be the best Christmas present this young missionary couple could receive!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Advent Begins With Hope

We began Advent on Sunday in worship by lighting the first candle in the wreath and singing Advent hymns. It's wonderful to see children like Maya bringing in the light of Christ and Colton studiously lighting the first candle.

"Hope is a star that shines in the night," we sing and that theme is reflected in this banner, which was hung on Saturday by the crew that also put greens all over the sanctuary.

Meanwhile, in the hallway, the Tree of Warmth waits to be decorated with scarves, gloves, hats, mittens and other items that will be distributed to Isaiah 58 clients.

Upcoming Advent events include
  • Prayer shawl ministry group, Dec. 4, 6:30 p.m.
  • Soul Care, Dec. 9, 7 p.m.
  • Elders circle, Dec. 10, 6:30 p.m.
  • Advent event with a chicken and dumpling dinner, dessert, hot cider and gingerbread house building, Dec. 11, 6:30 p.m.
  • Reading circle, Dec. 19, 10 a.m.-noon at 6 North Coffee.
  • Pastor's open house, Dec. 21, 5-8 p.m.
  • Christmas eve candlelight worship, caroling on Flora Place and treats at the Kreuger's, 6:30 p.m.
Remember to download a copy of the Advent Devotional from this page, or pick up a printed copy at church. Inspiring reading, some of it written by people you know!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Joint Thanksgiving Service Nov. 23

Each year Compton and Tyler Place Presby- terian hold a joint Thanks- giving worship service on the Sunday before Thanksgiving. Both churches are partners in Isaiah 58 Ministries as well as other community projects. This year, we added a new ecumenical twist. The Rev. Bob Hagel from Tyler Place (at right in photo) and his wife Kate asked Jacque if she would baptize their baby daughter in the Presbyterian tradition. After the elders gave Jacque a resounding "yes," arrangements were made to bring the font over from Tyler Place. Disciples of Christ practice believers baptism by immersion, but we are part of a covenant of 7 denominations that recognize each other's baptism and share open communion.

Our sanctuary was packed with members of Compton and Tyler Place and a large number of Hagel relatives. Rev. Hagel gave the sermon. Jacque and our elders officiated at the communion service. All undesignated offerings were given to Isaiah 58 Ministries and totaled $497. After the worship service, about 80 people gathered in Fellowship Hall for traditional turkey and all of the delicious carry-in trimmings. A good day.

November 21: Recital

Friday night, Nov. 21, CHCC member Talya gave a faculty recital at Forest Park Community College, accompanied by David, our organist. A large group of Compton folk came out to support the event, along with many of Talya's students and her proud family. The lighting wasn't the best for shooting with available light, but Talya was stunning both visually and vocally. We are so blessed to have Talya as part of our congregation: this talented mezzo-soprano hits all the high notes in our anthems and brings a wealth of experience from appearances with many local musical productions, including the Muny. The best part: Talya turned the recital into a benefit for Isaiah 58 Ministries as those who attended brought enough non-perishable food to fill at least 4 boxes for the food pantry. Thank you Talya, for all you do!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

November 16: Wonder and Blessing

Something new has been added to worship this month, called Time of Wonder. We have three or four children now in worship regularly and our student associate pastor, Lorrie Kovel, has started this time especially for them. Today she is reading the story Stone Soup before we take up the Thanksgiving special offering. Children and youth are encouraged to take part in the life of the church and worship in various ways, including acting as acolytes, bringing in the light and carrying it out.

For almost a year now, the Rev. Bob Miner has been an active member and parti- cipant at Compton. He has accepted a call to be the pastor of First Christian Church in Osceola, Iowa, and we gave him a special blessing at the end of today's worship service. Pastor Jacque Foster presents him with a book of Advent readings on behalf of the congregation, since he is moving this week and begins his ministry in Iowa on the first Sunday of Advent. Godspeed, Bob; you will be missed but we know you'll bring many gifts to your new congregation.

One of Bob's gifts we have enjoyed at Compton is his musical ability and wonderful singing voice from the pews. Last Sunday, he brought the special music during worship. Bob's daughters, Kim and DebE remain as active members and deacons at Compton, and Deb and her husband David are anticipating the birth in the spring of baby #4. We are grateful for this talented and gifted family.

November 9: Baby Dedication

On Sunday, Nov. 9, Jenn and Josh brought baby Elizabeth to be dedicated, and to dedicate themselves as parents. Elizabeth is the second of four babies born or expected in the congregation within a year. We do not baptize infants, but have this ceremony of promises to nurture children as they mature in the community.

Pastor Jacque Foster introduces Elizabeth to everyone in the pews, as we all sing Jesus Loves Me. Elizabeth likes music, it seems, because she quit fussing and just enjoyed the attention.

Also on this day, Sarah and Bryan became parents of Peter Eliot, who came into the world around 4 a.m. Peter is baby #3! We hope to have photos of him soon.

Monday, November 3, 2008

All Saints and More

Our garden at the corner of Flora Place and Grand is vibrant with changing color this week, including this lovely sweet gum tree. One of the newer flower beds is in the foreground and in the distance, two of the benches are visible. Sunday was warm and the space was inviting. You may click on the picture to enlarge it and see more detail.

In services we remembered those saints who have shown us the face of God and who have gone before us. Many former members were named aloud in the service, and other saints known perhaps only to the individual thinking of them were named silently. It was a joy to have Elizabeth and her parents, Josh and Jenn, with us, as well as several visitors.

In the figures at right, some numbers have been changed this week. GoodSearch has inexplicably lowered our total earnings on the web site by about $35, so that amount is now lower. The change came in estimated earnings from GoodShop, and could be due to an error in the original estimate or perhaps someone returned items previously bought, which also would result in a deduction. Usage of the site increased in October so we hope more people will use the search and shopping functions to benefit Compton Cares.

The amount listed the past two weeks for the initial pledges was also incorrect--I had mistakenly picked up the amount received to date on pledges instead of the original amount pledged. That has been corrected. On Sunday, Dave B. announced that we now have 8 full bags of aluminum cans in his and the Rev. Jacque's basement. We need only 7 more to make a trip to the recycler with over 100 pounds. The other day I spied 4 empty fruit punch soft drink cans next to a parking space and I jumped out of the car and grabbed them. Empty cans are everywhere. Be on the lookout! You can collect cans even if you never touch soft drinks!

Upcoming: Comptonites will celebrate the Rev. Bob Miner's call to serve a church in Iowa and give him a proper sendoff on Nov. 16 in worship and coffee hour. Bob's daughters, DebE and Kim, are active members at Compton. And Compton will host the Thanksgiving service and dinner for our partner churches on Nov. 23. Bring a dish to share and join us.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Change Is Powerful

This morning we took the latest change bank collection to the bank. After all was counted, we have a contribution of $75.63, from the accumulated pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters of Compton folk. Since the beginning of Compton Cares in the fall of 2006, the change bank has raised $613.54. Thank you, everyone. It's not too late to start saving change. The bank will be at coffee hour after church on Sunday. Every Sunday!

Happy Friday on TV

This photo of the Happy Friday crew from Compton Heights was featured on St. Louis station KMOV-TV, Channel 4, on Thursday, Oct. 23, during a local community talk show. It was taken the preceding Friday, Oct. 17, when there was a fall chill in the morning air. Seen, from left, are Roger, Madeline, Larry, Arlene, Kathy, Jan, and Brenda. (Hint: if you click on the photo, it will enlarge and you can see everyone clearly! )

Great job, everyone! Happy Friday celebrated its 4th anniversary in September. The crew offers free coffee and hot chocolate to people commuting to school or work on South Grand from 6:45 to 8 a.m. For more about Happy Friday, visit this link on Compton's web site. (Photo courtesy of Stephanie Simmons, KMOV.)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Cleanup Day and Hootenanny

Saturday, Oct. 18, was a cleanup day at Compton Heights, followed by a fellowship supper, campfire and sing-along at the Kreuger's new condo one block south. The front of the church facing Grand Blvd. is now fully landscaped with hardy roses, perennial grass, and seasonal sweet potato vines and blooming pansies. It's a truly welcoming entrance.

Fall plantings and some fresh (and free!) compost enhances the peace pole that is a focal point of the entrance to the education and office wing.
The pole is decorated with "Peace" in multiple languages, including Hebrew and Chinese.

All of the garden beds got fresh mulch. Here Norm, Leslie and John wait for the next load of mulch to arrive in Dave's little red truck. We learned that homeless people sometimes sleep on our three park benches at night, and they have taken to policing any trash that shows up in the garden.

At last, another load of mulch. Liz, Darrell and Madeline get to work transferring it to wheelbarrows. By 5 p.m., all the plant beds were tucked in for cold weather and the tools were stowed away.

This is the second floor unisex bath room that Leslie and Dave have renovated. New or re-set fixtures, a fresh coat of pale mauve paint and some pictures on the wall make this former cramped and somewhat scary space inviting and functional. Some ladies will be taking sewing lessons in a room on our second floor in a training program sponsored by the Islamic Foundation of St. Louis. Now they also have a functional restroom to use. Thanks Dave and Leslie!

After some overgrown bushes were removed during the clean up day, the Compton Sign is now clearly visible from the street. In addition, a new sign is coming before long to further increase our visibility on the corner.

Jan and Larry invited everyone to Compton Gate patio for a picnic supper followed by a marshmallow roast and sing along, with two fire pits to keep us all mostly warm in the low 50-degree evening. It was a great ending to a fine fall day.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

All Creatures Great and Small

On Saturday, some 20 people and 10 dogs gathered in the garden at Compton for a blessing of pets. Items representing absent pets were also brought--we aren't sure how many. The renovation of the lawn next to the church has made such gatherings possible. Upcoming, on Saturday, Oct. 18, we'll have a lawn cleanup and garden winterizing day starting at 2 p.m., to be followed by a cookout, marshmallow roast and folk singing around a fire pit, all at the Kreuger's new condo community.

Walton-McGuire Wedding

September 12, 2008--Tower Grove Park was the lovely setting for the evening wedding of Shannon McGuire and Matt Walton. The outdoor ceremony was held on the patio of the Piper Palm House, overlooking the lily ponds. Guests were treated to a memorable reception inside the Palm House, the oldest greenhouse west of the Mississippi River, now meticulously renovated and restored. Shannon and Matt graciously set up a web site where guests could, if they wished, purchase gifts that would return a portion of the cost as a donation to Compton Heights. The organization is the I Do Foundation, and it's a great idea. Congratulations and best wishes to the couple, who are now home from their honeymoon cruise and back at work.

New Gifts in Memory of Norma

Gifts in memory of Norma Santhoff have been received from the following donors. The list may be incomplete but additional donor information will be published as it is received. We are grateful for Norma's family and friends who chose to honor her life in this way.

Joseph Santhoff
Melva McDaniel
Glenydon and Marjorie Smith
Pernelle Zeller
Stephanie Maupin
Marc Zeller
Phyllis Benson
Millie Slack
Deborah and Edward McCrumb, Jr.
Robert F. Zeller
Fred K. Zeller
Donna and Jerry Stockglausner
Joseph and Patricia Santhuff
Marcella and Andrew Depka
Doug Hughes
Jean Schloemer Enright
The Rev. Hugh and Barbara Wilson
Jan and Larry Kreuger
Nancy, Don and Julie Keller
Marjorie Skotvold

Thursday, July 3, 2008

In Memory of Norma

Today we held a memorial celebration for the life of Norma Santhoff, one of the original members of the Compton Cares Team and a tireless believer in the power of prayer combined with practical action. Norma is remembered by her 5 children and many grandchildren, by her neighbors in the condo, by the staff and board of Cornerstone early childhood center which she founded, by the literally thousands of children whose lives are better for her work, by members past and present of Compton Heights whom she taught in Sunday School, led in youth groups, shared with in Reading Circle and study groups and prayer groups. She was an elder, a past moderator of the congregation. She was the person who called you in the middle of an ice storm and found you a warm bedroom when she learned your power was going to be out for days. She took a sabbatical from Sunday school to observe the caring community that gathered in a fast food restaurant near her home. She was not afraid of the people who knock on your door and want to witness to you; she invited them in and studied the Bible with them for years, with the understanding that neither was going to convert the other. She brought rocks from the spot she visited on vacation because she knew you collected rocks and she wanted to thank you for taking her to the airport. Within days after receiving a devastating diagnosis, she was back calling people in the congregation as well as her friends to check on their various surgeries and recoveries. She was at home in the InterRacial Dialogue and representing Compton at the Pride Fest booth, as in this picture taken a year ago. Three benches in the garden outside Compton were provided by Norma, because she wanted people passing by or waiting for the bus to have a place to sit and rest and enjoy the view. Norma loved babies, children, young couples, single people, old people, dogs, neighbors, strangers, her family, friends, flowers, and challenges. She not only believed in prayer, she was a living prayer. We have lost a treasured friend and heaven has gained a saint.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

We Dedicate the Renovations and Thank Donors

June 14, 2008--We had a perfect day to dedicate the Compton Cares project and thank everyone who has supported the project so far. After a short worship service in the sanctuary, about 50 members and Friends of Compton processed outside to the new plaza and ramp for a litany of dedication. Then we all went back inside for refreshments and conversation. This isn't the end of the project, of course. We still have to raise about $13,000 and collect all of the commitments that have been made to date. But more important, we need to discern what the next phase in this inclusive ministry will be.

Below I am posting the complete list of donors and supporters we thanked on Saturday. It's a long list, but it comprises the record. Of course we welcome additional contributions of any kind, ranging from spare change and soda cans to checks of all amounts. Please continue using GoodSearch, GoodShop and eScrip as a way to support Compton Cares in the future. I will continue to update the financial progress in the right column, but for now, there won't be any new posts about the project unless we undertake something new. Which we might.

Gifts to Compton Cares Campaign

Thanks to the faith, generosity and commitment of many members and friends of Compton Heights Christian Church, we have received monetary gifts and pledges of $148,108.23 as of June 14, 2008. Our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the following people, some known to us and some not:

Everyone who has brought aluminum cans, cell phones or ink cartridges for recycling, or who has brought coins to the spare change bank.
Everyone who has used GoodSearch, eScrip, or GoodShop, or donated cabinets, countertops and appliances for the kitchenette.
Everyone who volunteered time and donated items for the Gypsy Caravan.
Everyone who has volunteered time meeting with the architects and contractors, and those who helped write and revise various loan applications, grant applications, or tended other financial details.
The Bridgeton Fund committee for its generous grant.
Everyone who has shared the vision and prayed for this project.

And we also recognize the following donors of time, talent, and/or treasure, some of whom made their gifts in memory of or in honor of loved ones:

Arlene Arbogast
Mrs. A.T. Akin, Jr.
Sue Bardelmeier in memory of Paul Bardelmeier, for his love of Compton Heights CC.
Vaughn Bardelmeier in memory of Paul Bardelmeier
Lisa Bast
Jon Berquist & Sally Willis-Watkins
Anna Mae Bertram in memory of Mr. and Mrs. R.T. Blackwell
Jill & Jim Boaz in memory of Helen and Harold Boaz
Ben Bohren
Carol Boss and Matthew Henderson
Brenda Brinkmann
Martha A. Cain in honor of Jacque Foster and Dave Boger
Robert D. and Lois S. Chambless in honor of Jacque Foster and Dave Boger and in honor of Norm and Judi Linville
Jim & Sharon Clayton in memory of Glennon Sack and Hazel Sack Carlisle and in memory of Virgil and Blanche Clayton
Adele Coble
Mary Davis
Ransom and Pat Davis
Clarence J. Diedriech
Cindy Diggs
Roger Elder in memory of Ralph N. Elder
Thelma Elder in memory of Ralph N. Elder
Jacque Foster and Dave Boger in memory of Ozzie Cain and Vernon Boger and in honor of Martha Cain and Nancy Boger
Lynda Gamlin in memory of Lee and Herbie Sutton
Rufus K. Gann, Jr.
Beth Gellman
Cletus and Rona Glasener in memory of Cletus, Sr. and Pauline Glasener
Reed Glasener in memory of Cletus, Sr. and Pauline Glasener
Darla Glynn
Howard and Darlene Goodrich in honor of the Rev. Jacque Foster
Betty and Red Graham in memory of Joe Spitler, Lee Sutton, and Herb Sutton
Tim and Rhonda Graham in honor of Red and Betty Graham
Bob from Happy Friday
Madeline Haraway
Matt Myers & Doug Harrison in honor of Norm and Judi Linville
Carolyn & Jon Hicks in memory of Hazel Carlisle
Darrell, Marty & Sarah Hughes in memory of Clifford and Edna Hogshead
Bonnie Jorgenson & Chris Correia
Lillian Kaley in memory of Fred Kaley
Cora Katzen in memory of Frances French
Rosemary Kemper in memory of Carl Kemper
Bill Kleiner
Darren & Kathie Kreuger
Duane T. Kreuger
Larry & Jan Kreuger
Ruth V. Kreuger in honor of your wonderful church
Larry and Mary Kuhn in memory of Millie Kuhn
Dennis Landon and Lana Hartman Landon
Leslie Latham
April J. Lewton
Norm and Judi Linville in honor of Compton Rising
Ronnie London
Eva Maldonado
Mr. Merry Maney
Ruby Manning and Joan Heintz
Arlanda McCelleary and her grandfather
Marsha McGuire
Shannon McGuire and Matt Walton
Kathy Mead in memory of Virgil Mead and Mary Mead; Walter C. Tarde, Sr. and Lillian Tarde; and Carol V. Mead
Lewis & Dolores Mead in memory of Carol Tarde Mead
Ron and Carol Mead in memory of Carol V. Mead
Timothy Murphy
Susan & Roland Petri in memory of Walter Tarde, Sr., Lillian Tarde,
and Carol Mead
Richard Reed
Bryan and Sarah Richardson
Melissa Roth
Norma Santhoff
The Santhoff Family in honor of Norma Santhoff
Mary E. Schumacher in memory of her sister-in-law, Donna; and in honor of her nephew, Donovan Goodwin
David & Jennie Shirey in honor of Compton Heights’ Faithful Witness
in the City
Millie Slack in memory of George Slack
Sarah Spann
Rosemary Spitler in memory of Joe Spitler
Vijaya Vasudevan & John Srinivasan
Patrice Stricker in memory of George & Pat Fugel, and John Fugel
Walt & Audrey Tarde in memory of Mr. and Mrs. W.C. Tarde, Sr., Carol V. Mead, and Harold & Helen Rudy
Karen Tye and Brent Dodge
Liz Vollmar in memory of Carol Mead and in honor of Lew Mead, Kathy Mead and Madeline Haraway
Barbara & Hugh Wilson
Guang Wu

Update: 6/22/08 The donor list has been updated to reflect a new memorial gift.


We gratefully acknowledge the following talents and skills of professionals for the Compton Cares Accessibility Project:

We appreciate the creative vision of Jeffrey Mugg of St. Louis Design Alliance, whose plan for our project embodied his belief that a building should treat those with varying abilities the same.

We are grateful for the construction supervision by Zach Hamilton and the counsel of Rhonda McDougal of Church Extension during the loan application process.

We thank Beth Gellman for her consultation on landscape design for the planters and our adjoining meditation garden.

We appreciate the offer of Julia Krovicka to design a new sign that will reflect our congregation’s commitment to ministry in the city.

We thank our ministry partners in Isaiah 58, who endured dust, noise and delays while plumbing was being re-arranged over their very heads during part of the construction process.

We also acknowledge the work of our Compton Cares Team volunteers:

Dave Boger was invaluable as liaison for construction
Kathy Mead handled the loan and legal stuff
Jan Kreuger kept the records of pledges and gifts.
Norm Linville shared his experience with working with an architect on a church project.
Shannon McGuire provided page design expertise and tended to many details.
Judi Linville started a blog to chronicle our progress.
Marsha McGuire helped us stay organized and on task.
Norma Santhoff led us in learning to say Yes to the vision.
Jacque Foster, our pastor, was and is awesome.

Thank you, all!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Dedication will be on June 14

Our gardens are growing, and providing respite in the shade for people waiting for a bus, walking down Grand, or coming to the food pantry or other services of Isaiah 58 ministries in our building.

On Saturday, June 14, we will have a dedication service to celebrate the completion of the Compton Cares Accessibility renovations. The program begins at 11 a.m. and will be followed by light refreshments and a chance to visit. Donors to the capital campaign will be recognized on an honor roll, which will appear here after the service. We chose a Saturday for this service so that Friends of Compton from other congregations can join us. Let's all hope for weather as lovely as it was last Sunday morning when these photos were taken!

Also on Sunday, I took new photos for the header and sidebar of this blog, since the construc- tion and reno- vations are complete. Our financial campaign is nearing the finish line, too. Follow our progress in the sidebar to the right.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Gypsy Caravan Nets Compton Cares over $1000

Our day at Gypsy Caravan started ominously: we arrived on the grounds at 6:30 a.m. to find the canopy we had set up the night before collapsed, and some of our boxes containing sales items soaked through when our tarps were dislodged by the wind and rain that accompanied a fierce lightning storm about 4 a.m. At first, four of us just held up the four corners and bailed water, while we called for reinforcements from others. Help arrived when Darrell showed up with clamps and two-by-fours, and Liz arrived with towels, a plastic bin, and Pepsi. I went off in a corner and quietly sang the words to the plains Indian sun song. Once the canopy was stable, Kathy, Marsha, Norm and I were able to dry off and arrange some of our 153 items that Compton members donated for the sale. We opened for business at 9 a.m.--a couple of hours late--and an hour later the rain stopped. By 2:30 p.m., the sun was almost out and the crowds were busy going through some 330 different vendors' wares in two parking lots at the University.

Some of our makeshift tent repairs can be seen here, as Dave bargains with a wary buyer, Leslie guards the cash box and Norm ponders the scene. Behind our booth was a ditch full of rainwater and just an hour earlier, two geese and their 7 goslings floated by on their afternoon swim. In the foreground are two of the 8 quilts and quilt tops... we gave up hanging them from lines under the eaves of the canopy after it became so unstable.

These photos were taken about 3 p.m. When the sale ended at 5 p.m., we had only a few boxes of unsold items to pack up, and the tent to take down and the tables to stow in the Hughes' van and ours. We had sold 7 of Mary's 8 quilts/quilt tops and--BREAKING NEWS--just tonight we sold the last remaining quilt, the yellow/floral block one, to a Friend of Compton and quilt collector who e-mailed us from Florida saying his check would be in tomorrow's mail. So tonight, our net profit from this fundraiser for Compton Cares is $1,018. A big THANK YOU to everyone who donated, helped price and set up, worked the booth and prayed for the success of this project. Thanks, too, to an old Indian dance master in Oklahoma who taught me a "sun song" many years ago.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Ready for Gypsy Caravan

Well, we are ready for Gypsy Caravan tomorrow. The donations for our sale kept pouring in and after I tallied all of the price stickers we put on items, we have a total asking price for our items of over $2,300! And to think Mary started it all with 8 quilts! Let's all pray for decent weather (heavy thunderstorms are in the forecast) and for all of our items to sell. Four of us will be there at 6:30 in the morning to be ready for the early bird shoppers. If I have a chance, I'll have pictures and results to post tomorrow night. Happy holidays, everyone.

This morning in worship we had a wonderful time rejoicing as Lana was able to enter her own church for the first time in years, using her wheel chair for ease of access. We had many visitors, including Madeline's family, plus Robbie home from college, and Norma's son and fiancee as well. A great day all around, and finally a way to welcome everyone. Thanks to everyone who has supported this project this far. We have just a little bit farther to go and then we won't need this blog any more!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Gypsy Caravan Quilts and Tops

In addition to the hand quilted quilts that Mary Schumacher donated to Compton Cares, she also gave four interesting tops that are not finished.
This basket quilt was made by Mary's grandmother, Mary Ellen Gastineau, in the late 1950s or early '60s. Mrs. Gastineau died in 1980. Many of the fabrics appear to be feed sacks and '30s prints. The six-inch blocks are set on point and the top measures 70" by 87". There is sun damage on the lower rows and one edge is frayed.

This butterfly charm quilt, also with some '30s prints, was made by Mary's aunt Ora E. McFadden, who was a daughter of Mrs. Gastineau. The blocks are 7 inches, set on point, hand pieced and appliqued with buttonhole embroidery stitch. There is slight yellowing of the muslin fabric along one edge.

A top made of album blocks is attributed by Mary to Cora Ethel Hughes Johnson, her daughter Katherine McDonald and Katherine's sister-in-law Alice Hull. The women lived on Russell Avenue in the Shaw Neighborhood and died in the 1970s. The blocks are not signed. They measure 11-1/2 inches and the top is 67" by 86".

Measuring 61" by 83", this nine- patch top with 2-1/2" sashing has a "use up the scraps" feel and may have been made in the '60s not long before Mrs. Johnson's death in 1971. It is somewhat unusual in its use of plaid fabric in many blocks. Mary inherited it after Katherine McDonald died in 1978.

In addition to the quilts, our booth will feature Avon ruby glass, various collectibles, stained glass, 33 lp records, a globe of the moon and a handmade chocolate safe box, among other tantalizing items. For more information about Gypsy Caravan, click on the name to go to the event web site. We hope to see you there: we are in space C-94.

Quilts for Gypsy Caravan

One of the most exciting gifts to Compton Cares is a collection of four quilts and four pieced quilt tops donated by Mary Schumacher. These will be offered for sale at the Gypsy Caravan, the antique, craft and flea market of St. Louis, on Monday, May 26 at the UM-St. Louis campus. Above left is a rose applique quilt made especially for Mary by her neighbor, Cora Ethel Hughes Johnson, who lived on Russell Ave. and was a member of Compton Heights Baptist Church. Mary says it was made in the 1960s. It measures 69" inches wide by 83" long. The blocks are 17" with hand applique and French Knot embroidery. Quilting is 4 stitches per inch. Good condition.

This unusual version of a fan quilt was made by Cora Ethel Hughes Johnson, her daughter Katherine McDonald and Katherine's sister-in-law Alice Hull. Blocks are 7''. The quilt measures 68" by 82". Quilting is 8 stitches per inch. Very good condition. Some fabrics are 1930s but Mary thinks it was made in the late '50s or early '60s. Mrs. Johnson died in 1971.

A variation of the Orange Peel, this pink and green beauty was also made by Mrs. Johnson and her daughter Katherine and Alice Hull. Appliqued blocks alternate with print blocks measuring 10-1/2 inches. Quilt is 60" by 84". Hand quilted 4 stitches per inch. The muslin back has some slight staining from storage.

Alternating printed floral panels and yellow fabric brighten this 55" by 76" quilt made by Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. McDonald and Mrs. Hull. Quilting is 4 stitches per inch and some of the batting has shifted from wear and folding.

The next post (which will show up above this one) shows the four unquilted tops that Mary also contributed to Compton Cares.

For information about Gypsy Caravan, click on the name to go to the event web site.