Friday, May 28, 2010

The Fine Arts Ministry: My Portal into the Denver Art Scene

It is hard to believe it has been one year since my first art show. It was the “Mandalas” show at Mile Hi Church, organized and curated by the Fine Arts Ministry. Like a portal, my first art show at Mile Hi opened the door for me to the Denver art scene and my life has not been the same. I have since shown in seven more group art shows and had two solo exhibitions. And last week I was asked to curate an art show later this summer for a local theater group in their lobby. None of this would have been possible if I had not taken a leap of faith and submitted my painting “Infinite Love” into that fateful show.

The new Fine Arts Ministry art show “Portals” was hung today in the sanctuary lobby. My painting “Eightfold Path” is among the sixteen works on display. I was told by Cyndy Beardsley, Fine Arts Ministry Coordinator, that the number of submissions was record breaking so it is an honor that my painting was selected.

The common definition of a portal is of an opening, entrance, doorway, pathway or gate in the physical realm. However, a portal can also be used as a metaphor for spiritual growth. It can be an invitation for deep exploration into the inner pathways to our inherent nature, consciousness, and self-awareness. In Buddhism the Eightfold Path describes the way to the end of suffering, as it was laid out by Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha.

The Fine Arts Ministry is made up of a team of Mile Hi Church congregants who possess a passion for art. The team meets every twelve months to vision themes for the next year’s shows. Submissions are judged by members of the Ministry who have not submitted a piece of art. Work is judged on content and design, expression of theme, presentation and skill, and overall artistic expression and creativity.

Fritz and Doris Penning, artists and members of the Fine Arts Ministry, hang the new shows every two to three months. Together they take great care in arranging the paintings, photographs, and mixed media pieces to best feature each work of art. Fritz is the winner of the 2009 Eye of the Camera Best of Show and his photography can be seen at the Littleton Museum through May 30.

Mile Hi Church is located at 9077 W. Alameda in Lakewood, Colorado. “Portals” runs through August 5 and can be viewed in the sanctuary lobby on Sundays from 7:30 am to 1:30 pm and Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. For information on upcoming themes, dates, and submission requirements please email One need not be a member of Mile Hi Church to summit their artwork to the Fine Arts Ministry.

10% of the proceeds from the sale of “Eightfold Path” will be donated to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in memory of Karen V. If you, or someone you know, is feeling helpless or hopeless PLEASE call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or visit

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