A church on Lake Geneva has a new work of art to display to the public thanks to a student from Badger High School.
Molly Bergstrom recently designed a mural for the United Methodist Church of Lake Geneva, 912 rue de Genève. The mural was installed on the exterior side of the church facing Cook Street.
The mural includes the name of the church and depicts a loaf of bread with a chalice; pile of clothes with a hanger to symbolize the church’s community wardrobe program; a silhouette of three people; a plant growing in a pot; grapes growing from a vine; several sunset scenes; and the words “we are a family”.
Bergstrom said she wanted the mural to include images related to the church and a message that everyone is welcome to attend the church.
“It’s a safe place. We are open to everyone, ”said Bergstrom. “Almost all of them are drawings of the church.”
Bergstrom said she worked on the mural as part of her National Honors Society project, in which she was to complete an 20-hour community service project.
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She said she chose the Lake Geneva United Methodist Church for her project because her family has attended church for about four generations.
“I thought I could give back to something that my family was a part of and that gave me a lot,” Bergstrom said. “I wanted to work on something that would rejuvenate the church and draw the community’s attention to something that has always been there.”
Terri Smith, head of the church’s youth group, said she was thrilled when Bergstrom approached her to work on a project for the church. Smith said she believed a mural would help draw attention to the church building.
“When she approached me, she was looking for a project and we had this empty space that we were talking about what to do with it,” Smith said. “I was so proud of her. She walked around the church for at least half an hour for inspiration.
Bergstrom said it took her about six months to complete the mural, which she worked on while attending school and participating in school activities. She said her father, Michael Bergstrom, helped her build the frame for the mural.
“I had my own little nook with all of my pints of paint, so it probably took at least 60 hours,” Bergstrom said. “It was really fun. It was a way of giving back.”
Smith said she was happy with the completed project and the force with which Bergstrom worked on the mural.
“I’m just amazed. She did a terrific job, ”said Smith. “She did a good job of getting our name into the community, which was one of her goals, I believe.”
Bergstrom said this was the first mural she had done, but that she would consider working on another in the future.
“I would be open to that. I really enjoyed doing it, ”said Bergstrom. “I like being artistic, but I appreciate it even more when it goes to a good cause.”
Bergstrom said she took several art classes while studying at Badger High School and had been interested in art since she was a child.
“Just through school, you get the experience of taking art classes here and there. It just inspired me to do more, ”said Bergstrom. “My parents have been very helpful to me with the things that interest me. My dad has a craft room where you can paint or do anything.”
Bergstrom said that although she enjoys art, she plans to study business after graduating from high school.
“But I hope I can find something where I can be creative,” Bergstrom said.
Besides the National Honors Society, Bergstrom is also involved in Badger High School’s Distributive Education Clubs of America program, which targets students interested in a career in business.
Bergstrom is also involved in the church’s youth group program, which has around 13 members.
Smith said Bergstrom and other members of the youth group had helped design brochures for the church and updated the church’s website and Facebook page.
“It drew people to our youth group and informed people that our church is open to all families if they are interested in seeing us,” Smith said.
The youth group worked with a local men’s shelter and Habitat for Humanity and sent Christmas gifts to a Native American reservation in North Dakota.
“We shopped on Amazon and shipped items on reservation,” Smith said. “We got over 30 gifts there, so we’re small but powerful. “
Smith said Bergstrom’s father also helped the youth group.
“He’s there to help with whatever the youth group needs,” Smith said. “So her family is very involved in the youth group program and in the church. “
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