Mankato, MN–Marcelline Babcock, age 77, doesn’t consider herself an artist. She gives that credit to her sister who is a painter, despite being legally blind. In spite of this, Marcelline recently earned the title of Christmas card artist due to her design being chosen in The Lutheran Home Association’s (TLHA) annual Christmas art contest. The selected design appears on more than 27,000 cards that are sent out worldwide by this non-profit ministry.
Marcelline, originally from Wells, Minnesota, moved to The Lutheran Home: Cedar Haven this past June. She easily settled into her new home and made new friends. She enjoyed decorating her room where she proudly displays paintings from her sister. Her eight children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren visit often.
The staff at Cedar Haven encouraged Marcelline to enter TLHA’s annual art contest—her first. She never really drew or painted before. This year’s contest theme was the hymn, “Oh, Come All Ye Faithful.” Marcelline thought, “I’m not the family artist, but I’ll give it a try.” She decided to draw the Christmas star using colored pencils. Despite having painful carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands, Marcelline finished her design.
This is the 16th year of the contest where residents, clients, tenants and other individuals served throughout TLHA’s homes, services and programs have been invited to participate in an art contest. Over the years, the contest guidelines have remained the same: All artwork must be created by the artist, without any assistance or touch up; the artwork may be created using pens, pencils, markers or paints and the designs should be on a white piece of paper.
Babcock’s drawing was personally selected by Michael Klatt, President and Chief Executive Officer of TLHA, from among the other entries received. During the selection process, the artists’ names and homes and any services in which they participate were kept anonymous. This is the fourth time that artwork from someone at Cedar Haven has been featured on TLHA’s cards. Babcock, who loves celebrating Christmas, was delighted to help say, “Merry Christmas from Jesus” through her design.