WELCOME FROM HAYWOOD STREET:
Thursday, July 29: come fellowship with and meet some of the Respite staff as we open Haywood Street Respite back up to Companions. We look forward to seeing you all and discussing ways to engage with our friends and staff within Respite. We will be having brunch at 11:00am in the Hospitality Room downstairs. Please RSVP to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration is now open for the Golf for Awareness. A link to the registration page can be found HERE along with updated information about all our wonderful event sponsors. Thank you all for your support!
3. Bible study. prayer & contemplation held Sundays, 12:30-2:00, outside with Pastor Jody. All are welcomed to attend.
4. Worship: Wednesdays at 12:30 in the parking lot
1. Sign up to provide a meal for Respite here!
2. Fresh flower pick up help needed Friday and Saturday morning between 8-9.
3. Meal runner help needed Sunday and Wednesday during welcome table hours.
4. Tuesday meal prep will be in 2 shifts moving forward: 8-10 and 10-12.
*Let Hannah know if you’re interested and available to help with any of the above tasks.
Next Companion Orientation: August 2 at 5 pm
A HAYWOOD REFLECTION BY: BROOK
Weeks ago, Haywood Street’s Fresco Host, April, asked if I’d be open to reflecting on how I felt when my daughter, Soleil, was added to the Haywood Street Fresco. These are my thoughts…
If you look at early, and even almost final, sketches of the fresco, you will not see Soleil. Robert stands alone, arm outstretched, fist full of flowers.
In her final weeks of second grade, just a couple months before the first strokes of pigment met the plastered sanctuary wall, Soleil’s step-dad, Kyle, died from a drug overdose.
Thank God for the autonomic nervous system; that part of the body that keeps going even when you don’t want to. My existence at the time was involuntary to say the least. Most of the months following April of 2019 are a complete blur, punctuated only by distinct moments of grace and the kindness of folks I’ll never be able to properly thank.
Christopher Holt and the team of Haywood Street Fresco artists are among these people. I remember Christopher telling me one morning that they wanted to honor Kyle in the composition. “We’re thinking of adding a Cubs hat” Christopher said. I laughed. “Perfect.” But what was even more perfect was what the team settled on. After some contemplation, they decided to include Kyle by including Soleil—the kid who not only had Kyle’s number, but his whole entire heart as well.
I want to tell you a thousand sub-stories about Soleil and what Kyle meant to Haywood Street; to Chef Dave and Ms. Mary. But April asked how Soleil’s inclusion made me feel. So, let me attempt non-deflection.
The truth is, I did not feel much at the time. Gratitude was present. Overwhelmed was there, but not separate from every other overwhelmed part of me.
The truth is, my feelings about Soleil’s inclusion in this masterpiece are being fully felt now. Just recently, I sat in a front pew, taking in the entire scene, tears galore.
I felt the memory of Soleil sitting in Christopher’s studio, being sketched — a worthy moment of attention after a season of coming second to addiction and chaos. I felt the magnitude of the gesture to pull me into something immortal when mortality was the theme du jour. I stared at Robert’s grip-full of flowers and remembered the care he put into the arrangements at Kyle’s memorial. Baby’s Breath. I’m pretty sure I felt everything a human is capable of feeling.
What’s interesting about the Haywood Street Fresco is that while you may first encounter the models by their names – Jeanette, Charlie, Jerry, Soleil…you soon get to know them by their stories. And once you know their stories, you realize those stories are, at once, both personal and universal. Soleil’s story is Soleil’s story. It is also the story of all children who have had to navigate tragedy, who have been affected by the devastating effects of drugs and alcohol and who have shown us that resiliency, like our breath and the beating of our broken hearts, is also a part of the autonomic nervous system.
When you observe the Haywood Street Fresco, you, as beautiful and as awful as it may be, observe yourself. And that’s how I feel when I look at Soleil, and that’s how I feel when I look at every other drunk, sober, beaten down, and beaming Child of God portrayed in this masterful work of art.
You can experience the Haywood Street Fresco: Sunday, 11am – 2pm, Mondays-Thursdays 10am – 2pm, and Fridays and Saturdays by appointment.