Monday, December 21, 2020

The Painted Churches of Texas

St. Cyril and Methodius Catholic Church
Dubina, Texas

Each year I sketch a favorite church from our travels for our annual Christmas Card.  But, like most of you, travel plans this year were cancelled or postponed.  We were excited to go with 4 other couples on a Viking River Cruise in France to celebrate my husbands retirement.  But that didn't happen.
With time at home, I read more and sketched more, in particular I enjoyed (and still am) James Micheners book about Texas.  All 1400 pages!  Having not grown up in Texas, and really not traveled much in my home state, I was intrigued!   

This prompted a day-trip in late September, on a beautiful fall day, to Schulenburg and the surrounding areas to see the famous "Painted Churches of Texas."  There are about 20 of these churches scattered throughout Texas, with six found in this area.  Settled by Czech and German immigrants in the late 1800's, the church was the center of their communities.  They built beautiful tall steepled churches, like this one in Dubina, but the true beauty lies within.  The colorful murals and decor will surprise you and leave you in awe.  Each one beautiful, but unique in its own way.  Sometimes painted by local members of the church, others painted by itinerant artists, who just happened to be passing through the area.  

This has been quite a year... for me, a time for more reflection on the busy life I was living.  I have missed some things, but like these churches, I appreciate the simplicity of the outward appearances, and have learned to value the beauty within.  

"but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God."
1 Peter 3:4

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