A time for everything

By turnx3

Quilt Garden

Yesterday evening we drove up to Amish country in north-eastern Indiana for the long weekend with our pop-up camper. We have visited Amish country in Ohio several times, but this was the first time we've been up to this part of Indiana. This morning we drove to the Visitors Center in Elkhart to pick up some information, including a CD of the Heritage trail, which takes you through the different towns and the countryside of Amish country. Along the route there are these different quilt gardens and quilt murals, inspired by different quilt designs. This quilt garden is in front of the Menno-Hof, an information and educational facility explaining the history, beliefs and way of life of the Amish and Mennonite people. The 2011 quilt garden pattern is the Anabaptist Cross which is an original name for this pattern based on the logo designed for Menno-Hof. At the center of the block you find the cross, the Christian symbol which represents God's great sacrifice of his son, Jesus, an offer of salvation for humankind. Jesus in the center of the block is in keeping with Anabaptist beliefs that put Jesus at the center of their faith. The triangles around the outer edge of the design represent a chain which is broken by the four arms of the cross. The chain represents the martyrdom of early Christian and Anabaptist believers, many who were bound, tortured and executed by fire or drowning because of their faith. The chain broken or interrupted by the cross represents the impact of faith in destroying the earthly chains that bind us. Another feature along the trail was the Elk Art - a public art exhibition that features life-size fiberglass elk designed and created by local artists in different locations throughout the county. Dr. Havilah Beardsley founded the town of Elkhart when he purchased one square mile of land from Pierre Morain, a Pottawaomie Indian Chief in 1831. Supposedly Beardsley chose to name the area Elkhart because the island at the confluence of the Elkhart and St. Joseph Rivers is said to resemble the shape of an elk's heart. It was a brutally hot and humid day, so we didn't spend a great deal of time outdoors - we'd stop at the different quilt gardens/murals and the decorated elks, I'd take a few pictures and we'd retreat to the air-conditioned car. By about 4.30 in the afternoon the clouds had rolled in, and as we drove back to the campsite, the heavens opened, accompanied by thunder and lightening, and according to the car's external thermometer, the temperature dropped by almost 20 degrees in less than an hour!

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