A Story-Formed Community

10 years ago someone had the idea of brightening up the long, dim hallway of Northminster’s children’s wing. Some of us had seen an amazing mural at the Children’s Medical Center of the Medical College of Virginia Hospital, and we began to dream of something equally spectacular. The concept evolved into, “Why not make stories of the Bible come to life in colorful paintings?”

We discovered that the hospital mural had been created by a local artist whose name is HappyYou can learn more about him here.

Here’s Happy the Artist hard at work on our hallway—he’s putting the finishing touches on David and Goliath.

Happy’s concept for the mural was to imagine that the children of Northminster were actually painting the Bible stories they were learning.

The mural begins at the beginning, Genesis 1-3. Here is Adam naming the animals.

Naming the Animals

Happy convinced us that in order to draw children in, the images on the mural should be cartoon-like. And judging from their reaction when children first see the pictures, he was right.

A walk down the hallway is a journey through the pages of the Bible. There are stories from Hebrew Scripture, like….


Joseph and His Coat

Baby Moses

Elijah and the Widow

Ruth and Naomi

David and Goliath

Daniel in the Lion's Den

Daniel's Friends and the Furnace


The pictures from the New Testament focus on the life of Jesus……

Jesus' Birth

Boy Jesus at Temple

Jesus' Baptism

Jesus with Mary and Martha

A Boy Offers His Lunch to Jesus

Jesus on the Beach after Easter

Stanley Hauerwas once wrote that the church is “a story-formed community.” He’s right, you know. The pictures that Happy painted along our children’s hallway represent some of the Bible stories that shape us. Every week as our children walk down the hall to their classrooms, these stories surround them. I think of the hallway as a long, bright prayer for our children: May the stories of Scripture shape who you will become.

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One Response to A Story-Formed Community

  1. Elise Currier says:

    I just spent the last half hour admiring and enjoying your wonderful murals. These are fantastic!!!!!!

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