Giving new life to old trees in a Chariton County churchyard


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The following reflection is from a member of St. Joseph Parish in Hurricane Branch:

Our beautiful church grounds were not exempt from the ash tree disease that has destroyed thousands of ash trees in Missouri.

So what is it they say? “When life gives you lemons you make lemonade.”

And that’s what happened, thanks to a single person who had an idea.

He did his homework and proposed an amazing solution to our “lemon” problem of the dying trees.

The “lemonade” turned out better than anyone could have ever imagined.

We hope the praying hands welcome visitors to Hurricane Branch for many years.

Even more so, we hope visitors will glance to the south in the cemetery and catch a glimpse of St. Joseph looking out over our cemetery.

What do you know about St. Joseph?

My first thought is that he was a carpenter. He had a God-given talent to create wonderful things with his hands.

Just like Eagle Ridge Chainsaw Carvings, who created our beautiful carving of St. Joseph for all to enjoy!

Did you know that in the entire Bible, there is not one quote from St. Joseph? Not a single word!

It is said he was a very hard-working man who wanted nothing for himself.

He was always the person who stood back and made sure everyone was okay.

He was one that could be counted on to be there for everyone in their time of need.

But not one time did anyone write about anything that he said. He was a carpenter without any great fancy or exquisite words.

The angle that the sculpture of St. Joseph is facing is perfect.

He is humbly standing in front of an old dirt plowed field. It reminds us that he doesn’t have to say a word.

He brings so much peace and comfort to those who have loved ones buried there under his watchful eyes.

He silently keeps watch over all those who have passed.

He stands there, silently promising to watch over us when the time comes for us to join our loved ones.

A huge thank-you to Dennis Speichinger for the amazing idea and all the hard work of turning that idea into reality.

And thank-you to Eagle Ridge Chainsaw Carvings for these beautiful tree carvings.