In 2021, a WCUMC leadership team met and dreamed together of a simple, easily remembered statement describing why our church exists. The result of that discernment: “Cultivating a Community of Compassion and Courage.”
That team then dreamed of creating a beautiful, artistic rendering of that statement that would be installed in a very visible location — a testimony and blessing to our broader community. A young local artist from The Monarch Project took our “dream” and created the design pictured above.
After much deliberation, the decision was made to locate the mural on the south side of our church building which is visible both from the street and the La Petite parking lot. The mural was placed on the wood siding above the stucco, which makes the artwork more visible.
As we emerge from the pandemic, congregations are being advised that signage is a powerful tool to remind a community that has either forgotten that the church exists, or assumed that local church buildings would be closed forever. We are now faced with a unique opportunity to spread a message of hope that can be a blessing, and boldly announce that the church is not out of business!
The Monarch Project’s aim is “to humanize and support the immigrants in our community by telling their stories through art and raising awareness about the injustices they face.” Founded by 19 year-old Rima Makaryan (the artist behind our design) and engaging the talents of mostly young artists (many of whom are “Dreamers”), The Monarch Project has already completed eight large public murals in Sonoma County. You can learn more about these amazing young people and view more of their work at https://www.socoimm.org. You can also view an inspiring short documentary film about Rima and one of The Monarch Project’s murals at this YouTube link.
Pastor Laurie Bayen shares the story of the mural. The video also includes a time lapse of the painting of the mural. You can watch the video here: https://youtu.be/OWBfbfgw91U
Also, The Windsor Times wrote an article mural, “A mural speaks a thousand words: “Monarch Project gets ready to unveil first Windsor mural”.