The Chapel of the Oaks

A rose on the grounds Of the Chapel of the Oaks


Youngest son wanted to take a summer drive. We stopped by the local fast food for a ‘buck iced tea’ and away we flew. Driving up hills that ascended into our imagination as the trail turned our minds.  The Yucca plants were standing tall, hidden within the snake turns of the mountains. Familiar objects of man and earth passed us by. The road driven as a waterfall that flowed onto Topanga Canyon Boulevard. Then something winked in my heart to the right of the canyon at Lassen and Valley Circle. The Chapel of the Oaks.

A bright day at the Chapel


It was bright today. The roses outside, and the stain glass windows inside the Chapel, were radiant. It was positively illuminated. Only one man was in the chapel as we sat down pulled into humbled silence.

A bright place .. no more darkness…


We talked a bit. The man had just come from Portland Oregon to attend a service for his late Uncle. Son’s eyes lit up. He wants to go to Portland to view some steam engine trains this summer there. I listened as I reflected on the light while bathing in the ambiance of the beautiful small chapel.

The Chapel has several stain glass windows of oak trees.

Was it five years ago when mother was positioned in a pine coffin before me? Then my experience of this place was a dark, cold coffin where my focus was drawn to her, only her. Mother was a very independent lady. She was stubborn and self-sufficient and kept to herself. She was dedicated to her children and codependent to her husband.

Today the gloom and grief lifted. I did not notice anything in the chapel before at mother’s funeral. Today, the Oaks Chapel transformed into a wonderful archetype of death, transformation and rebirth.

Son was so sweet and kind to me today. Very wise in his ways. My mother’s image, held in my mind and heart now, are happy, bright and brilliantly free. With closure new doors open.


Author: Hudley Flipside

Welcome to Hudley Flipside’s “The Seminary Of Praying Mantis Publishing.” Praying mantis shows me her story of life, death, and rebirth. For me she is an image or symbol of the divine in all things. I watch the praying mantis in my garden and have taken her image as my logo. She is an amazing little creature, and I relate to her connection to nature. We are both wild and part of this strange world. She is a part of my mythology as I am part of hers.

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