UUCOC Events Calendar

May 2020
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Several trees and other sites commemorate individuals. To the left of the Faith entrance is a magnolia tree planted shortly after we bought our property. Liz Loper and her family planted it in memory of S. Gus Alexander Jr., the husband of Kathy Loper Alexander (now Kathy Smith) who was killed in combat in Vietnam.

The next memorial tree is the one to the right of the entrance to Hope. This was planted in 1983 for Bobby Vaughn, a popular teacher of our teens.. In the area between the west parking lot and Faith is a post oak tree (currently about 3” diameter) titled Founders’ Oak. It was dedicated to our charter members in 2003 as it replaced several taken down in a severe windstorm. There was another smaller Texas White Bud tree planted in memory of Georgie Phillips, a faithful generous member on the approach to the labyrinth.

The framing around the front sign Transforming lives through compassion and action/ Conscience of Oak Cliff is from a carefully carved sign that said Oak Cliff Fellowship created for us by artist Greg Metz shortly before he moved to be nearer his position as UTD faculty member. A year later we voted to change our name to Unitarian Universalist Church of Oak Cliff and the carving was removed. Greg helped in our RE classes and worked with one class to make plaster face masks. In 2006, Nick Guman built the brickwork around the flower garden to the right of the front door of Faith and repaired the concrete table that was another memorial as an Eagle Scout service project.

This land has been used in a variety of ways. For many years, Harry Jones cut, maintained, and mapped trails. Halloween Party attendees sat on logs around a campfire while Leona Anderson read The Telltale Heart. Some of our children enjoyed a weekend campout, and north of our parking lot, an organic garden survived for two years.

In the early 90s, Glenda Brandner honored her Native American roots by making it possible for some Lakota Indians to build a sweat lodge in a wooded area on the western section of our land. It was temporary – put up for healing ceremonies when a leader came to the area and was taken down each time in a manner that honored the ritual. Later, Bernard Ice, an Oglala Sioux from Pine Ridge, conducted several ceremonies. Currently a group from First Church conducts sweats in another lodge built on the same location. Glenda arranged a memorable evening meeting for some of the Code Talkers who helped win WWII to share their experience with our community,

Have you looked at the mural our children designed and painted on the side of Charity? This was orchestrated by Cheryl Johnson and Susan Ammons in 2001 as the children completed a study of world religions and chose pictures and phrases to represent them. It is the third mural on this site. In the early 70s, Esther Jones invited all the children to draw pictures of things they liked, then they selected the group favorites, and Esther helped the children paint the pictures on the wall. When the artwork faded, it was painted over. In 1987, Tom Wellman helped the boys in his class paint a mural representing famous Unitarians they had been studying. Again, after many years it, too, was faded and damaged so the wall was returned to solid color paint.

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