Buildings Beautiful

2018-09-21 St Mark's sanctuary facing back
St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, built in 1836

Artprize, the international art contest in our area, is in full swing. Although I enjoyed seeing the art entries, I enjoyed walking around in the hundred-year-old churches that are hosting some of the art entries just as much. Here are a few of my favorite sights:

2018-09-21 St Mark's church organ pipes
Organ pipes in St. Mark’s Episcopal Church


2018-09-21 St Mark's church NOW St Francis
St. Francis Of Assisi sculpture, part of the Artprize entry “NOW”, outside St. Mark’s.


2018-09-21 Massive doorway Fountain St church
Fountain St. Church, built in 1924


2018-09-21 Raphael's Madonna Of The Chair - Fountain St church b
A mosaic in Fountain St Church: “Madonna Of The Chair”


2018-09-21 Artprize Fountain St church wooden ceiling
Wooden tiles on the ceiling of Fountain St. Church


2018-09-28 Cornerstone Church doors
Cornerstone Church (Heritage Hills)


2018-09-28 Cornerstone Church sanctuary
Cornerstone Church’s sanctuary


2018-09-28 Cornerstone Church joy box
A stairway in Cornerstone Church with a joy box beside it


2018-09-28 Cornerstone Church preach the gospel
Inscription on the outside of Cornerstone Church


2018-09-21 St Mary's chapel at St Mark's a
St. Mary’s Chapel inside St. Mark’s Episcopal Church


2018-09-21 St Mary's Chapel at St Mark's d
Stained-glass window in St. Mary Chapel


2018-09-21 St Mary's Chapel at St Mark's b
One last look at St. Mary’s Chapel inside St. Mark’s Episcopal Church



Toxic Charity – by Robert Lupton (2011)

Toxic Charity

Robert Lupton has worked among the poor in the United States, particularly Atlanta, for over 40 years. During that time, he has learned much about the best ways to help people. There are approaches that work well, some that only temporarily help, and some that actually hurt communities in the long run.

The problem of poverty has been with the human race almost since the beginning of our existence. God told the Israelites in Moses’ time: “There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your fellow Israelites who are poor and needy in your land.” (Deuteronomy 15:11) Centuries later, Jesus said, “The poor you will always have with you.” (Matthew 26:11) He fed thousands of hungry people as an example for us to follow.

Jump ahead to present times. In the metropolitan area I live in, the number of homeless shelters, housing subsidies, food pantries/trucks/kitchens, clothing banks, free phones, and other helping programs are increasing. But it doesn’t seem to be having much of an effect on the number of impoverished people. Do we just give up? Absolutely not! We still have a responsibility to help our brothers who are struggling. Some of our methods are flawed though. Mr. Lupton gives his thoughtful suggestions on making charity something that truly lifts people up, even though it may take longer to accomplish.

Excerpt from pages 129-130:

Anyone who has served among the poor for any length of time will recognize the following progression:

give once and you elicit appreciation
give twice and you create anticipation
give three times and you create expectation
give four times and it becomes entitlement
give five times and you establish dependency

Excerpt from page 179:

But when we mainly look on the negative aspects of a community, we overlook the legitimate business entrepreneurs, the good parents, the wise grandmothers. When we focus on what is wrong, we miss what is right. And our strategies for helping are driven by combating problems rather than strengthening potential.