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Support Local Arts: Bring Beauty to Your World

stageIn the small Canadian prairie town where I grew up there is an arts centre named after my mother. The Eleanor Pickup Arts Centre is dedicated to the performing arts.  At center-stage sits a grand piano like a tribute to her. My mother taught piano for 60 years.

Even at the age of 93 years, as she lay dying of cancer in a hospital palliative care unit, she gave final instructions to a favourite young protégé. It’s true, I was there to see it.

My mother loved performing arts — whether music, theatre or dance. She loved visual arts such as painting and film. She passed that love on to me. My children and grandchildren are artistic. 

The arts bring such richness to life. Support them in your community. The arts encourage development in young people and enhance community life and give great enjoyment to you. Invest yourself in a local theatre group, music festivals, an arts centre, or perhaps a community writers’ guild.

Human beings are creative by nature. Encourage them. Bring beauty to your world.

Valentina Lisitsa plays Ludwig van Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata, Op. 27, No.2, Movements 1,2,3.

It should be noted that Beethoven wrote his Moonlight Sonata in mounting despair of increasing deafness. At the time of this composition, he considered suicide.

In a letter to his brother, Beethoven later wrote “Thanks…to my art I did not commit suicide.” Thankfully for our sakes he did not. Beethoven went on to write some of his greatest masterpieces despite his deafness.


Mark Davis Pickup is chronically ill and disabled with degenerative multiple sclerosis. He is an advocate for life issues and disability inclusion across North America. He and his wife, LaRee, have been married for 38 years. They live in Alberta Canada with their two adult children and five grandchildren. Mark is available to address issues of euthanasia, assisted suicide, and issues revolving around suffering that often fuel calls for euthanasia. He writes regularly at http://markpickup.org and http://humanlifematters.org. For bookings, contact him by e-mail at MPickup@shaw.ca or telephone (780) 929-9230. Mark Pickup's bi-weekly column can be read in the Western Catholic Reporter (Canada) at http://www.wcr.ab.ca/.


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  • goral

    The Church will very soon canonize JP2, who was/is also known as, “the beautiful soul”. His beauty came from the arts. He was a performing artist before he became a priest. I’m sure, as in the case of other artists, it was the wholesome escape to the arts that gave him the will to continue the struggle throughout his tragic life.