People sometimes wonder why the pottery classes are considered a health ministry at St. Philip’s. Have you wondered too? The students will tell you in their own words below but, first, here is a peek at the wonderful history of the “Create and Rejuvenate with Clay” program  at St. Philip’s.

We began 16 years ago in La Parroquia in the space the Philip’s Phixer’s now use. Before that, the room was inhabited by “The Tuesday Morning Group.” These ladies met weekly for many years, making pottery and other items for the Little Shop. Over time, each member of this loyal group passed away or became infirm. Very respectfully, we inherited their kiln. From this earnest beginning, the pottery program has grown into a stalwart endeavor of six classes, serving the church membership and community, changing lives in the most powerful and unexpected of ways. To read more about the full breadth of this amazing program, please go to our web site. Some describe the program as “the best in the state.”


Here is the power of healing clay as it moves through the lives and hearts of our students:

“… as a woman who values growth towards being a more fully spiritual being, the program serves me invaluably. Pam and Tim respect each of us and lead us continually to grow into the fullness of our beings, as individual expressions of the Divine … they ask only that we remain humble and open to ourselves and each other …” L.L. (retired business person)

“…the experience literally changed my life. I discovered I could ‘create’ with no judgement, no comment that wasn’t given with love and caring and encouragement to keep on working, to practice the skills, to understand that art is from the inside, not necessarily perfect from the outside…” L.B. (retired business person)

“… your music, your choir, organist and visiting musicians in your church are the top of the line. The St. Philip’s pottery classes rank with the very best of all that you offer …” N.F. (retired NPR radio host)

“… having this special program at St. Philip’s says much about the church and the value it puts on the sacred aspect of art and creativity. Attending has a wonderful and important impact on my life …” R.T. (therapist)

“… each week I grasp a new meaning for creativity and think, ‘what will be our next Mt. Everest?’ We all shall wait and see …” R.B. (retired engineer)


—Pam Ballingham, M.C.
—Tim Ballingham, M.F.A.


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