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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Breaking down walls

Texas youths' artwork is more than just a mural

Grace Lutheran Church's building needed a face-lift, and the youth were ready to do the job.

The San Antonio, Texas, church is situated in a downtown area with little brightness and decoration.
The senior high youth wanted to paint a Christian mural on the north wall of Grace's warehouse. In bringing the proposal to the property board, the church council and finally to the whole congregation, the youth said:

"It's not just a mural, it's a way of saying, 'Something new is happening here.'

"It's not just a wall, but a way of breaking down 'walls' that divide us.

"It's not just fun and excitement, it's a way of building community within Grace and outside the walls of Grace.

"It's not just a 'youth project,' but a way of saying, 'Children and young people are a part of church too.' "

The congregation gave the youth the green light. Members and businesses donated paint, with the youth supplying the rest.

In September a local artist, Brother Cletus, sketched a design in chalk on the warehouse wall and instructed the group on how to paint the design. More than 30 parishioners--from 8 to 65--participated in the project.

The mural is already drawing attention. People have stopped by the church just to inquire about the artwork. And a local newspaper reporter interviewed the young people about why they decided to head this project.


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