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"Embellish the Beta State tapestry, one member at a time."

Beta State, Alabama State Organization
The Delta Kappa Gamma Society International

 

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A story by Nancy Karrick, Beta State President

I want to share a history lesson, as well as a story with you.  Many of you will remember seeing pictures in your world history books of the castles in Europe. Those castles were mostly made of stone for protective purposes. However, they were very cold and damp inside in the wintertime, and the few fireplaces did little to keep them warm. The medieval people were very talented in many artistic ways, and many of them were quite wealthy. In order to help keep their castles warm, the owners commissioned huge tapestries which covered entire walls from floor to ceiling. These tapestries served as a layer of insulation and did help with warmth. They served 2 other purposes as well: to show off the owner’s wealth, and to beautify the castle walls. If you will look back at our United States history books, you know that our pioneers often lived in log cabins, chinked with mud. If the mud came out or the logs did not fit tightly, those cabins were bitterly cold. Pioneer women took extra quilts from their cabinets and nailed them to the wooden logs. These quilts served the same purpose as those tapestries in the European castles. Some of our Alabama Gees Bend quilters have said they did the same thing with their quilts when times were hard.

Regardless of whether it was tapestries or quilts, if one became torn, it needed to be repaired to keep the tear from getting larger. It was not unusual for cats to climb the tapestries, nor for rats to nibble on them.  Dampness on the stone walls would often cause the fabric to rot and a hole develop. With holes and tears in the tapestries, they were not the thing of beauty they once were, and cold would creep into the room. Mending them was a necessity. Each and every thread was important to the tapestry.

Let’s look at the Beta State tapestry. I think most of you will agree that it is beautiful. But we have a few holes and tears which need to be repaired. Every time a member withdraws, a tear appears in the tapestry. When a chapter dissolves, we have a hole. Suddenly, the Beta State tapestry isn’t quite as beautiful as it once was. All of us have jobs to do to repair our tapestry. When a member of your chapter misses several meetings,  take the time to call her,  send a note, or drop by her room at school. Offer to take her to the next meeting. If she has a problem at school, ask if you can help her with it. In other words, be a sister in the truest meaning. We need to show love, care, concern, understanding, and sympathy for our sisters. Equally, we need to share in and publicize their accomplishments. Do everything possible to get that member back into your chapter, and help repair the tear.

Our Beta State tapestry is large, but there is certainly room to enlarge and embellish it. Make an active attempt to recruit new members. Scan the newspapers for women educators who are in the news for their accomplishments. Look around your own school for possible members. Search in the unexpected places for members-church and private school teachers, trade school instructors, central office personnel, nursing instructors, band directors, and librarians at the public library. Make it your own personal goal to find one new chapter member a biennium. Just as every thread is important to a tapestry, every member is also important to our Beta State tapestry.

When chapters fall to less than ten members, a red flag should go up. More members will help spread chapter responsibilities so that no one is overly burdened. More members equals more excitement at meetings. More members means more ideas. More members means that chapter is on the road to recovery. That also means that we don’t have a hole in our tapestry to fill because dissolving is no longer an option.

Let’s embellish the Beta State tapestry, one member at a time. With each of us doing our part, ours can be the most beautiful tapestry in Delta Kappa Gamma.

 

Contact Madeline Buchanan
Beta State Webmaster
madeline@mlbuchanan.com

Updated on July 30, 2015