The Gifts of Creativity

The Gifts of Creativity

The Gifts of Creativity

Photography, children’s books, watercolor and oil paintings, needlepoint, wood sculpting, short stories, Haiku, works of fiction, stained glass, knitted headbands and mittens, note cards, spiral bound blank journals, fiber art and crocheted scarves, wood worked into pens, utensils and bowls – plus, music – all on display in the parish hall on May 14th. Can you picture it? Can you feel the warmth, and lively conversations? It was a wonderful day!

It was still winter when we put out the call for parishioners to celebrate and share their gifts of creativity for an inaugural springtime Arts A Bloom. We had no idea what the response would be – yet were confident that creative gifts among parishioners were plentiful; we were hopeful that people would find a way to share a part of themselves and overjoyed at the response. Several of the exhibitors shared a bit about their relationship with their creative gifts:

I enjoy creating art. I explore with all kinds of media. Every piece is its own adventure for me, it’s always about the journey – not the destination. The final piece, if I ever actually arrive there, is beautiful, no matter how “messy” it may look, because of what I experience through the process of opening myself up and having the courage to take the adventure in the first place – that brings me joy and satisfaction.

I learned the art of Hairpin Crochet from a Sister of Mercy when I was in the eighth grade in Bath. Over one summer, with patience and love, she taught me this art. Over the years, I’d create a piece from time to time. Always remembering her. For me, this craft/art is filled with peace, love of God’s creations, and lasting connections with the ultimate user (whom I may never meet).

I began to take up needlepoint in the mid-1970’s when I lived in Washington, D.C. as it was an occasional hobby of a friend. I never did much in quantity, but enjoyed the variety of canvases available on the market and felt I could produce a decent result. In 2001, I joined the American Needlepoint Guild. It was there that I learned new stitches, threads, techniques and met up with a group of friends which was a delightful part of attending their seminars.

Finishing furniture as a child, I learned to love the smell and feel of wood. Although I am primarily self-taught, I did take two courses on wood sculpture through the Smithsonian resident associates studio arts program and one in furniture making from a prominent Virginia furniture maker. My belief is that we all should give voice to those creative energies within us.

Using my child’s artwork to create notecards and other products, which I sell to benefit the nonprofits that were important to my child has helped give me purpose.

I still pinch myself when I think I was able to see these gorgeous animals in the 80’s when I traveled to Kenya.

We are grateful for the generosity of all who participated. Special thanks to the students and educators at St. Brigid School who created art with this event in mind. Much of their work lined the walls – bringing added excitement and color to the event. If you’d like to see more photos of the event, they’re on our Facebook page in a post from May 14th.

Next spring, Arts A Bloom 2.0. What will you share?

May Crowning

May Crowning

May Crowning

Faith Formation families celebrated the start of the month of May — a month to honor Mary, Jesus’ Mother — with a May Crowning on Sunday, May 1st. After the 9:00 Mass, they processed out of the church, bringing flowers and the crown to the statue of Mary outside, as Fr. Brian Conley, SJ read a blessing. You can see that statue throughout the month near the altar at St. Pius X. Our thanks to Lauren Tigerman for creating the beautiful crown and to the parents who provided refreshments to parishioners who joined them for this holy tradition.

You might find this blessing from a Book of Blessings, published by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, as a prayer prompt or reflection at home:

Blessed are you, Mary, mother of our Lord, for you have believed the word of God.
In faith and love, you have reflected on the words and actions of God in your life and the life of God’s holy people.
With Jesus, we call you mother. We honor you in this crowning.
Pray for us and lead us to you Son.
Amen.

Extravagant Tenderness in the Ignatian Year

Extravagant Tenderness in the Ignatian Year

Extravagant Tenderness in the Ignatian Year

Perhaps you’ve heard the word that there’s an upcoming talk in the spirit of the Ignatian Year by Fr. Gregory Boyle, SJ.

Fr. Greg (aka Fr. G) is a bestselling author and Jesuit priest. Based in Los Angeles (the other L-A), he is the founder of Homeboy Industries, the largest gang intervention, rehabilitation and re-entry program in the world. We’re thrilled that Fr. Greg will be here in Portland at Cheverus on the evening of May 24th at 7 pm. The event is free to the public, with reservations required. He’ll be speaking to themes found in his third and latest book, The Whole Language: The Power of Extravagant Tenderness. You can find an enthusiastic review in America Magazine at this link: https://www.americamagazine.org/arts-culture/2022/01/20/boyle-whole-language-review-242204.

We’re planning a Community Read of The Whole Language, with a discussion over coffee on the morning of June 4th at the Parish Hall on Ocean Avenue. Our friends at Letterpress Books, located in Northgate Plaza, have copies of The Whole Language stocked, and will gladly order more if needed. You can order by phone at 207-747-4232 or stop in. It is always so appreciated when we choose to shop local!

We hope you’ll join us to hear Fr. Greg and to share some time together reflecting on his talk and the book over coffee, tea and a snack. There’s a lot to unpack and relate to our own lives in beautiful ways. Please let us know if you’re able to participate by calling or emailing so we can be sure we have enough goodies.

To reserve your seat at Fr. Greg’s talk at Cheverus at 7 pm on May 24th, go to: https://bit.ly/RSVPMay24GregBoyleSJ

Have you read either of Fr. Greg’s other books, Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion or Barking to the Choir: The Power of Radical Kinship?  There’s a theme about what’s powerful, isn’t there?

Skill Building: Communicating our Faith with Others

Skill Building: Communicating our Faith with Others

Skill Building: Communicating our Faith with Others

The Easter Journey: Communicating our Faith with Others

We hope you’ll join us as we take a similar journey as the disciples who journeyed from being locked away in fear on the night of Easter Sunday, to proclaiming the Good News confidently – and in way that was understood – on Pentecost. On Saturday morning, April 30, Fr. Brian Conley, SJ will be leading us through conversation that can bear fruit for fostering useful, loving conversation about our faith with others. Even when it’s awkward, finding ways to move through it.

More effectively communicating one’s faith – both in the parish and in one’s family – was the most common hope expressed during the synodal listening sessions held earlier this year. This morning of reflection will build our skills in communicating our faith while building the listening church at the heart of the ongoing synod process.

Registration is needed for planning purposes, with a minimum of twelve participants, and maximum of 24. Please contact us by email or by calling 207-797-7026.

OLH Parish Paint Night – Virtual Paint Party

OLH Parish Paint Night – Virtual Paint Party

OLH Parish Paint Night – Virtual Paint Party

On Friday evening, May 6th, we’re celebrating spring with an evening of fun and creativity as we learn how to paint this spring blossom branch on a soothing background. Denyse Carbonell, owner of Artist at Heart, is an exuberant and talented art instructor who will take us brushstroke by brushstroke across the canvas from the comfort of our own homes (or together from the Parish Hall, with a limited number of in-person spaces available first reserved, first served).

No prior painting experience is necessary! Everyone will be following the same instructions, yet their creations will no doubt reflect their personalities!

Registration fee is $15 per person. You may register via our WeShare page online or by completing a registration form, located on the welcome tables at church entrances, and returning with payment to the parish office by April 29th.

We’ll be starting promptly at 7 pm, so please be online and ready to go!

As an option, we’ll have a limited number of supply kits available for $10 for local pick-up only. Each kit includes specified paints, thin brush, wide brush, one canvas, mixing palette (which is a clear plastic egg carton), a stencil to make your own tabletop easel if you’d like, plastic cup for brush cleaning – plus a few surprises!

Whether this might be a gift or a joyful addition to your home, it will surely be a conversation piece! Thanks to Mary C and the Events Committee for building this opportunity to get together and create! Be sure to look for some of these creations on display at Arts ABloom on May 14th.

Arts Abloom – Celebrating Our Creative Gifts

Arts Abloom – Celebrating Our Creative Gifts

Arts Abloom – Celebrating Our Creative Gifts

During this year when we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the call of St. Ignatius to follow Christ and the 400th anniversary of his being declared a saint of the Church, we especially celebrate finding God in all things. We’ve planned an event to celebrate the gift of artistic creativity.

Arts Abloom, an exhibit and creative arts show featuring the array of creative gifts of our parishioners and their families, will be held in the parish hall on May 14th from 10-2. From poetry and painting to woodwork and needlework; stained glass and drawings, music makers and more, artists and makers will display their creations, some will have inventory that you can purchase, others may take special orders, still others will show their creation as inspiration to all of us.

Many of the exhibitors are graciously donating a piece of their work so that you can have a chance to take it home! There will be tickets for sale ($5 each) which you can place in the boxes of the items that particularly strike your fancy.

Are you a writer or painter? Crafter or carver? Potter or fiber artist? Musician? Share your gifts! If you’re new at your craft, be brave! Show us, inspire us. Thanks to Mary C. for sharing her watercolor of Mr. Cardinal with us!! This is another tangible way for you to connect with your parish community.

Reach out to the parish office for more details and to register for your display space. This is a free event, thanks to our early supporters.

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