A show of HeArt: new ministry on campus
Posted: Jun 04, 2014
HeArt Ministry stretches athletes to display their creative sides.
"Sometimes we gave them paper and paints and just let them paint." — Alina Ellis
On a Thursday night, thirteen pairs of outstretched arms balanced framed or free artwork against the west wall of Common Grounds. A final person stood back to approve the lineup.
HeArt Ministry was preparing for their “HeArt Show,” a spring 2014 art exhibition event which would take place the next week. This moment of prep perfectly revealed the club’s goal: to create a masterpiece by standing shoulder to shoulder and reaching out.
“Our art can get trapped down in the lower level of Larsen,” says Art Education major Tatiana Diaz (Plainfield, Illinois). “But HeArt gives us a chance to share it with the campus and reach out to people in the community.”
Shoulder to shoulder they stand
The new ministry is focused on outreach. “When we volunteer, our intentions are to do art and share the love of Christ,” says Alina Ellis '14, co-leader with Taylor Cole (Peoria, Illinois).
There are no limitations; club members encourage anyone to get involved, whether they are art majors or not. HeArt also welcomes artists of every kind, from painters to graphic designers and anyone else who creates.
“I wasn’t sure how to serve,” said Monica Stamper (Plainfield, Illinois) in Common Grounds at the art show in April. “I had seen the ads for the club, but I just never went to the meetings.” The art major glanced at her piece of work on the wall while explaining that she finally joined HeArt when God — and other students — pushed her.
As she already felt devoted to helping the community, a push is exactly what Monica needed. “Artists find encouragement from one another,” she smiled.
“This year we were specifically dedicated to serving other ministries on campus,” Alina explains, which included Evangels, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Best Buddies, Urban Children's Ministry and Compassionate Ministries.
Some of HeArt’s services included visiting a local nursing home, painting with children, and building the set of Olivet’s fall musical. When they went to the nursing home with the ministry Evangels, residents participated in various ways: “We allowed them to paint whatever they liked, but some just liked to watch and told us to paint something for them,” laughs Alina.
Students involved in HeArt are able to do ministry through an outlet which they are collectively passionate about. “I’ve seen so many great relationships develop,” says Alina. “We were able to get to know one another really well and share our lives with each other inside and outside of our meetings.” She adds that HeArt has “come together as a group that loves God and loves other people.”