CHESTERFIELD, Mo. – The United Methodist Church of Green Trails in Chesterfield is opening its lobby doors for the public to view an exhibit from The Ethics Project entitled, “Student Art and Writing on Gun Violence, Peace and Hope.”
There were artwork and notes from 40 St. Louis students from four St. Louis high schools including drawings and handwritten notes.
One note reads, “Every morning and night, I hear gunshots.” Another note reads, “…a death that hit me hard was my little sister.”
“Every time I read one of these, I picture the young person who wrote it,” said Rev. Linda Settles, Green Trails pastor.
She said she hopes the exhibit will help convey the human toll of violence involving guns and unite community members to find solutions.
Amee Colvin is the director of the church’s outreach ministries. She said The Ethics Project gave students an outlet to express feelings they had not been able to express before.
“We want to be able to give a voice to those who are not being heard,” said Colvin.
She said the exhibit is part of the church’s Coffee and Conversations Ministry which focused on raising awareness of social justice issues and connecting those issues to a call to Christian service.
Church member Julianne Fels helped bring the exhibit to Green Trails. She had seen the display at a previous location and was moved by how gun violence was intertwined with everyday life.
“I just feel like we have to start somewhere and starting somewhere is by talking to each other and by raising awareness,” said Fels.
The church pastor said the exhibit provides hope that solutions are possible. Some messages in the exhibit express hope for a future filled with peace.
“They’re still hopeful in the midst of all the trauma that they’re experiencing,” said Settles.
The exhibit is open to the public from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, through July 29. Visit umcgt.org for more information or call the church at 314-469-6740. The church is located at 14237 Ladue Road in Chesterfield, Missouri.
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