As the month of August begins winding down… so do my reflections on how my connection to St. Jude’s Chapel in the woods began…pausing to bring closure to one part of the creation story while opening up myself to new possibilities of future tales waiting to be told by people I am still to meet. Anticipation!
I want to end with the amazing woman who started it all… Beverly Barutio. The brave woman who turned her health and life over to God and St. Jude…and then never tried to grab back the reins! Courage at its bravest!
Around 2011 Bill Barutio sent me a book of poetry by Beverly that I will cherish forever. Just reading the introduction sent shivers of appreciation down my back.
It read: To my children: You are my flesh, Blood of my blood, But more than this…You are my ” Thank you” note to God.
What a thoughtful dedication… the idea that the gifts we have been given are all thank you notes sent to God… to be served by him.
In the mid-eighties, with her veins collapsing due to heavy cancer chemo treatments, Beverly made the brave decision to thank her doctors and move with her adored husband, Bill, to a ” hamlet” called Trust… thus forming a two person population status.
After turning her health over to God she never looked back. She and Bill restored a post Civil War home and built the Trust cafe that brought surrounding Hot Springs neighbors to their diner-By 1990 the structure for the chapel had begun and was complete in 1991.
By the mid- nineties it was obvious Beverly’s cancer was once again spreading so she and Bill left Trust for Edisto Island, SC.
But Beverly never lost her keen sense of humor as illustrated by the first lines in her short autobiography.
” I was born at a very young age in Jefferson County, Iowa, because I wanted to be near my family. I moved to Savannah, Georgia because they didn’t raise much corn there, and it was near a body of water larger than our cow pond in Iowa.”
However, of all the stories and poems she wrote, my favorite is the dedication of the poetry book to her husband!
” To my husband Bill, without whom I am only Me…with whom I am, at last, totally Myself!”
So until tomorrow… What if we wrote God a thank you note … letting Him know… that we are only a little ” Me, alone but with Him in our lives, at last we are totally ourselves.” The perfect thank you note to God!
My blue Plumbago and orange Anthurium!
” Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh
I hope you enjoyed our excursion back into the past where Chapel of Hope began … I sure did! Back to my guardian angels Mike and Honey Burrell!
Beverly Barutio passed in 2002 -after throwing herself the best send-off party ever… in 2010 I found myself again and my purpose in life at the chapel she built for those who were lost and didn’t know it! Me!
I’ve so enjoyed your very special posts of the wonderful little chapel in the beautiful NC mountains. Ok Becky, it’s time. The mountains are calling and you MUST come.
Love you so and I’m ready for new adventures! You must pack your bags!!❤️💕❤️
Let me get through all mine and Ben’s medical appointments this week…they are stacked on top of each other…and I will sit back and pick a time! You are right….the chapel is waiting and I need this spiritual “booster.”
My thank you to God includes you for bringing joy and reflection to so many. It also includes the chapel, Beverly, Honey & Mike for showing you the way. Thank you for your many years of wonderful words and thoughts.
Thank you Beth….you sure know how to make a girl’s day brighter! You wonderful you!
What a beautiful story. I was reminded of God’s words in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you…plans to give you a hope and a future.” You were destined to write this blog, and Becky, I thank God for your posts. Each day, I make sure to read your posts, even if I don’t read any others, for there is such joy, faith, courage, compassion, and strength in them, through your hope and faith in God. I need these writings, now more than ever, as I have lost my desire to blog. But, I last week started college again to earn another Master, this time in Religious Studies and have a 7-8 page paper due Monday, so writing is back in my life and I hope it will trigger my desire to blog again! God bless you!
Oh I am so excited you are back in school! How is everything going…do you like it? You are so brave and such a role model to so many…you amazing person you!
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I haven’t been reading my blog. I am loving being back in school, especially after receiving a good grade on my first 7-8 page paper. But, I underestimated the tiredness. 15 years ago, I was in my early fifties, and now as my 70th birthday is only 2 and a half months away, I feel so tired, even as I feel energized. I am learning a lot. It’s funny, all of the young students call me Miss Regina, and my professors call me Dr. Davis-Sowers, so I often feel like an outsider. But, overall, I am so glad to get out of the house a couple days a week, to ride the bus to downtown, and to engage with others. I thank God each day for the opportunity.