The Fellowship Necklaces
Elizabeth Lewis materialized and shared her appreciation of the 2019 Stewardship Campaign by making and giving away(!) a limited edition of her signature block necklaces. She gave her experience a story and told it at the Celebration of Giving virtual zoom service on December 27, 2020.
Fall,2019: In keeping with recent tradition, the Stewardship committee was inviting congregants to contribute a tracing of their open palm on one of the fabric swatches they had set out to choose from. (Hand silhouettes were to be cut, then sewn into a beautiful fellowship banner, like the ones already in the main hall.) So every coffee hour I saw my friends taking time to choose the fabric that they felt best expressed their church persona, and I found it moving to witness such an intimate process of self-reflection taking place week after week. To preserve the memory, I took the fabric remnants home to….do something with.
Drawing on my mixed media artistic vocabulary, I followed my grid instincts to the wooden blocks I had left over from a recent and extensive presentation of block products, all referencing the grid-like construct underlying much of our perception and data processing. Blocks are units made up of six like but different parts. As units, they can be combined with other like but different units to make successively grander statements! See for example the splendid flower puzzle box pictured here. Similarly, in these individually strung necklaces, our fabric likenesses combine in both intimate and infinite ways, to share us with one another and unite our church community.
Although I first imagined that these pieces of jewelry would constitute my own stewardship contribution, I realized after I made them that they belonged and belong not to me, but to all of us! These necklaces called out to be freely given away, which happened spontaneously one memorable Sunday that Fall, which became one of my all-time favorite All Souls Sundays, remembered here and now.