The Sacred Circle, phase 1 of our Meditation Memorial Garden
In September 2022, the Board of Trustees approved a new committee to renew the work to plan, fundraise and build a garden behind the sanctuary for the church. The committee, led by Jeff B. and Anne L., includes Rev. Amy Rio, Gail S., Jane H. and Cosette B. Doug W. is involved as well as a consultant. That committee is now meeting actively and working again with Laurel Holzapple, the landscape architect who worked with the original committee and developed the full garden plan.
The original committee had reached the point of a final approved plan in 2020 and were interviewing possible contractors when the pandemic intervened and the committee was adjourned. During the lengthy planning phase before COVID struck, there was much conversation with members and various committees about the hoped-for garden. It is envisioned as a sacred outdoor space, where small services, rituals, meditation space, musical events and other gatherings can take place. A very important component of the garden will be a dedicated space for cremains of members and family members. Plantings of trees, shrubs and flowers will be native North Carolinian plants and be good choices environmentally.
Members are committed to keeping the congregation informed and involved as the church moves forward with the longed for garden. The garden project has been renamed The Sacred Circle temporarily and the final selection of a name will be the responsibility of the entire congregation. The intention is to develop the garden in phases, starting with a Sacred Circle and ADA accessible paths leading to the circle. An area for cremains is part of this first phase. It is the commitment of the committee and the architect to seek the most economical way to build the garden. The Sacred Circle funding will come from private member and friends donations, as well as some expected funding from land sale proceeds.
In the June church newsletter, committee members Gail and Cosette will share additional information about the garden. Members of the committee believe in the value of The Sacred Circle for the church and envision it as a very beautiful place that will be a source of pride to everyone!
Anne L. and Jeff B.