Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

A joyful labyrinth honors faith & family November 3, 2014

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 6:00 AM
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MY FRIEND JOY is one of those creative types whose talent and energy seem endless.

She carves and builds and creates, always working on some project that enhances the rural Faribault home she shares with her husband, Steve.

Indoors and out, Joy’s house and yard reflect her individuality, her appreciation for family and history and that which is old or useful or meaningful. Her faith is often interwoven into her projects.

An overview of Joy's backyard labyrinth.

An overview of Joy’s backyard labyrinth.

A few years ago, Joy constructed a labyrinth outside her walk-out basement. It presents for impressive and practical backyard art.

A close-up, without the overall impact of the meditative walk way.

A close-up, without the overall impact of the meditative walk way.

Until this past summer, I’d only seen the labyrinth in the dark, walking it during an evening campfire. I wasn’t prepared for the stunning beauty of this twisting path in the fading hours of daylight.

A mosaic created by Joy.

A mosaic created by Joy.


Sample tiles were used in the labyrinth.

Sample tiles were used in the labyrinth.

No wonder this took my friend some three years to construct. She began the labyrinth in 2010, laying selected tile into sections of concrete. Some of those tiles were sample tiles acquired from a friend.

The horse tile celebrates a granddaughter's love of horses.

The horse tile celebrates a granddaughter’s love of horses.

Joy proves always resourceful in reusing and repurposing. There’s not much she will throw.

Precious imprints of loved ones.

Precious imprints of loved ones’ hands and feet.

Grandchildren imprinted hands and footprints.

The focal point and end of the labyrinth, perfect for a prayerful walk.

The focal point and end of the labyrinth, perfect for a prayerful walk.

Memories. Faith. Time. All are intertwined here.

Walking portions of the labyrinth during a photo shoot.

Walking portions of the labyrinth during a photo shoot.

At least once a week, if not more, Joy walks this labyrinth. It is her quiet place, her place of prayer. Right here, created by her gifted hands, in her backyard.

© Copyright 2014 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


19 Responses to “A joyful labyrinth honors faith & family”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    I love labyrinths and this one is one of the nicest ones I have ever seen. Most of the ones I have walked have been green/grass ones and this one is such a visually pleasing one. I would love to spend a morning walking Joy’s. It was obviously a labor of love.

  2. Rena Says:

    What a beautiful idea! Thanks for sharing Joy’s labyrinth – bet it lasts longer than a memory quilt!

  3. Deanna Says:

    Love this! If I had as much energy as your friend, I would do something similar, something other than only wildflowers.

  4. Dan Traun Says:

    Great idea. Good plan using larger river rock to fill the gaps. I found out from various landscaping projects that pea gravel does not work so well; it works well for cats doing their business though. Lessons learned.

  5. treadlemusic Says:

    This totally drew me in and I MUST do a “Reblog”!!!!!!!!

  6. treadlemusic Says:

    Reblogged this on Treadlemusic and commented:
    When our Awesome God created each of us He put a tiny piece of Himself with each of our hearts that we might be a blessing to others. This special “creativity” materializes in many different ways. Please, take a moment and be blessed………………

  7. How nice to have such a contemplative spot right in one’s own back yard. Once, I took a spiritual writing workshop at the College of St. Catherine during which we got to walk their labyrinth. And we made little ones on paper. I’ve thought how cool it would be to make one in our back yard, but we don’t have enough room! Our gardens have sprawled and that’s okay; some days, they feel labyrinthine. Your friend’s labyrinth is lovely.

  8. What a Beautiful Place 🙂 Happy Week!

  9. hotlyspiced Says:

    Joy is certainly creative. I love how she put in little touches like her granddaughter’s love of horses. How lovely to design your own backyard xx

  10. Jackie Says:

    Oh how beautiful… I have never seen anything like this! What a peaceful and lovely way to reflect and pray 🙂

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