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Street Boys Art Class

On Sunday mornings at the ATN offices, you will find anywhere from 20 to 50 teenage boys playing soccer, having a Bible study, taking baths and now participating in an art class. I have the absolute joy of using the gifts and training God has given me to share something of His beauty with these Street boys.

One might ask, what significance Art has to a group of boys that, the night before may not have eaten or had a dry place to sleep? And don’t think I haven’t asked myself that question a few times. Perhaps the best way to explain its significance is to tell you about the first class we had.

I began by talking to them about art. What qualifies as art? Where do you see art? Who are artists? I showed them slides of some masterpieces. You may or may not be surprised that they had never seen the Mona Lisa or heard of Michaelangelo. It should not surprise you though that they leaned in close to take in every detail of a Picasso. Their eyes were dancing with amazement.

But the moment that took my own breath away, was when I asked them to look for the most amazing artwork in the room. No, it wasn’t the Rwandan basket on the wall, or the thank you photo hanging above the door. I began to point at each one of them and told them that they were each a uniquemasterpiece created by the Master Artist. As I shared with them the truth that God is the first and best artist, their eyes were opened. They began looking at one another as unique creations. More than a few heads nodded in understanding.

There is the significance of teaching art to hungry, homeless boys.

Truly, I hope for other blessings to come of it. Unlocking the right-brain function of these boys has potential to boost their capacity for learning and problem solving. There is also great therapeutic benefit to expressing oneself through art. These boys have been traumatized and they need to have an way to express it that does not involve destruction. For a few, there may even be a life’s work to be discovered using craft.

And yet, the greatest good that I hope will come of it began that Sunday morning.

God creates because he loves to. He delights in what he makes.

He is delighted in those street boys. And He made each one a special and amazing masterpiece.

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If you want to know more about the Street Boys and Peace House ministries go to: http://www.peacehouseministries.org/

Supplies are always welcome for a project like this. If you or your Church class are interested in supporting this project in a physical way, here are some suggestions to send in a package: (Louise Koonce B.P. 6548 Kigali, Rwanda)

  • crayons
  • watercolor paints
  • paint brushes
  • oil pastels
  • pastels
  • construction paper
  • colored pencils
  • colored markers
  • a few good hand-crank pencil sharpeners

There are some supplies (regular paper and cardstock,  pencils and glue) that are readily available here, but are a bit costly. You could send donations to cover those expenses to: Warrenton Church of Christ 3698 Lee Highway Access Road Warrenton, VA 20187 -For: art supplies, Rwanda.

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