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Your Views: Help save Oak Hill chapel to preserve sacred Janesville landmark

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November 29, 2013

Let us remember that the reason we struggle is more than our work, our things, our politics, ourselves. Many things are in the world thanks to those who came before us. One such thing is the humble Oak Hill Cemetery chapel. Built 114 years ago with love, by people whose motto was “Friendship, Charity, Benevolence,” Oak Hill chapel doesn't just stand out as the representation of the prayers of countless citizens—it radiates it, inside and out.

Oak Hill chapel is made of solid limestone blocks with solid stone ornamentation all around it. We know what it represents to each of us. And we know that it was built for the ages. It was meant to last. The stained-glass windows use symbolism that tells us the same thing.

The chapel has suffered neglect, yet it is still a place of beauty, thanks to its builders, and to those who lovingly tended it through the years. Thankfully, the city leaders have rescued the roof and have been very cooperative to the Friends of Oak Hill Chapel in our efforts to advocate for further restoration of this sacred landmark.

Who wouldn't tend it now? The chapel was built to honor those who lived before its builders. It is now up to us to maintain it for the same reason. Can we not find it in our modern hearts to let that happen? Those who follow will always know that even a city has its sacred places. For all.

JIM CRITTENDEN JR.

Janesville



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