In 1993, naturalist/artist Sister Mary Baird identified a dilapidated poultry barn as a resource. She began turning that resource into a living space and workshop. This space became known as MoonTree Lodge.
The environment proved condusive to creativity. Gardens and prairies were planted. Mary and friends made art.
In 1995 it was decided that a tree house was necessary.
For years, peace, art and nature grew, unregulated. Prairies and gardens were planted. The environment attracted more naturalists, artists and other creative folk.
In March of ’03 the MoonTree Mudheads began creating pottery.
Mary got interested in natural building. She built a model of a cob cottage. The idea of a life-sized cottage was considered. It was decided that a smaller cob hermitage (prayer/meditation space) was called for.
A group of interested folks began the foundation of this structure in April of ‘05. In June of ’05, a cob -building workshop was held. Work on the cob hermitage continued into the fall.
A leaky roof on MoonTree Lodge requires attention and thoughts about the future of MoonTree. Focus groups begin with sisters and others. The feeling of…as well as the idea for…a MoonTree Community emerge.
After several meetings during the year, a MoonTree Elders Group emerges and by January ‘07 has stated its Mission and Vision.
The MoonTree group is asked to submit its ideas for program or service expansion to the Planning Steering Committee of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ.
With the support of the PHJC, MoonTree Elders begin to consider a new home for MoonTree, to replace the failing poultry barn. After carefully weighing concerns about wasting the existing structure and increasing our footprint, elders decide to recycle the old building and begin plans for a new one. In early ‘08, meetings begin with architect Dodd Kattman.
Excitement grows... you read the website and daydream about your involvement... then...