Church members celebrate anniversary with quilt


March 12, 2000|By Christina Bittner | Christina Bittner,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

THE WOMEN OF Pumphrey's St. John United Methodist Church have embarked on a project to commemorate the church's 148th anniversary. They are preserving the church's history in a form that also has historical significance by being traditional to the black community -- a quilt.

Yolanda Dickerson, the church's anniversary committee chairwoman, said she thought that the quilt would be a good way to capture the history of the church and to recognize traditional African-American folk art.

"Quilts are a tradition in the black community," she said. Runaway slaves using the "the Underground Railroad used quilts. The quilts showed them the route to take and how to travel from one state to another."

Because only a few of the 15 church volunteers are skilled in the art of quilting, Dickerson contacted Odenton resident Barbara Brown, owner of the Quilt Connection, to provide instruction.

Brown showed the women what materials are needed, how to make a basic quilt patch and how to put the patches together. Each volunteer will complete at least one quilt patch.

When finished in December, the quilt will be a little smaller than a full-size bed quilt and will hang on a wall in the church, said Kim Hammack, the project's coordinator.

Dickerson said patches on the quilt will show St. John's Church in 1800, 1900 and 2000, and will carry the names of every pastor in the church's history.

"It will be a way for our children and grandchildren to look back and see how the church evolved," she said.

More important, the project has helped to create a new sense of community among the volunteers and church members.

"We have such a good time while working on this," Dickerson said. "You know we didn't want to wait to the 150th anniversary to do something. We can celebrate at any time. When you celebrate, you focus on the future, reflect on the traditions and learn to tolerate the differences among people. It is an opportunity to learn more and has put a smile on our faces."

St. John's will be the host of Mission Sunday at the 11 a.m. service today. The guest speaker will be the Rev. Minnie Washington of St. Timothy's Christian Baptist Church in Baltimore. Rev. Washington is the past president of the Women's Auxiliary of the United Baptist Missionary Convention of Baltimore and Vicinity.

All faiths are welcome to attend. The church is at 6019 Belle Grove Road. For more information call 410-636-2578.

Roland Terrace

A St. Patrick's Day dance will be held at the Roland Terrace Democratic Club from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. March 19. Tickets are $10 and include food, beer and setups.

Music will be provided by Cashmere. One need not be a member of the club to attend; all age 21 and over are welcome. The club is at 619 Matthews Ave., Brooklyn Park. For tickets, call 410-636-3269 after 6 p.m.

The club will be the host of an indoor-outdoor flea market from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 8 at the Club Hall. The cost to rent an indoor space with a table is $10. Outdoor spaces without tables may be rented for $5.

The club's kitchen will be open to serve breakfast and lunch. For information or to reserve a space, call Bob Ketchum 410-969-7449 after 5 p.m. or the club at 410-636-1504 after 6 p.m.

Park Elementary

The accolades for the staff of Park Elementary School keep on coming.

Last month, the county named two staff members Educator and Employee of the Month. Now word has arrived that teacher Winifred George has been named the winner of the Agnes Meyer Award.

Sponsored by the Washington Post, the award is given to the county educator who best instills in students the desire to learn, contributes to the school community, understands the individual needs of students, fosters self-esteem, encourages talent and demonstrates outstanding leadership. George teaches full-day kindergarten at Park.

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