From shattered bits of ceramics and glass gathered at the site of a huge gas pipeline explosion that killed eight people three years ago here, members of Bethany Presbyterian Church recently pieced together a healing for themselves and the surrounding community through a poignant mosaic.
Three members of the Bullis family and Bethany’s congregation — Lavonne, 82, her son Greg, 50, and his son William, 17 — were killed instantly inside their home near the epicenter of the violent blast that destroyed 38 houses in the Crestmoor neighborhood on Sept. 9, 2010.
All that was left of the Bullis home were pieces of cups, saucers and Christmas decorations from Lavonne Bullis’ collections. Lavonne’s daughter, Jeannie Bullis Young, found shards of the orchid pattern china used when the family gathered for Easter and summer birthdays, a small angel holding a harp and a sweet nativity scene that once decorated the home at Christmas, along with other reminders of happier times.
Young and other stunned family members scooped up the remnants out of the ashes of the family home while escorted by emergency personnel and Red Cross workers days after the tragedy. They tucked away the fragments, not sure what they would do with them.
Less than three years later, those precious pieces of family memories are part of a vibrant mosaic mural situated along an outer wall of Bethany’s sanctuary, with the words of Psalm 30:5, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes with the morning,” winding its way through the piece. Church and community members worked together at several public workshops in February and March this year to create special tiles and piece them together with broken tiles, mirrors and glass.
Read more at http://www.pcusa.org/news/2013/8/15/picking-pieces/