"Churches of Webster County" seeks to record and preserve the wide variety of expressions of faith communities in Webster County. Primarily focused on the photography, images of both the exterior and interior of each congregation will be included in the volume. Accompanying the full-color images will be a brief history of each congregation.
The book is being written and photographed by Kim Helmick. Helmick formerly served as associate pastor of St. Olaf Lutheran Church in Fort Dodge.
"One of my creative outlets during my years at the church was scrapbooking. I soon came to realize that what I was doing - preserving my family's story through photographs and writing - was very much like the Bible. The Bible is the record of the people of God. When my family looks through the scrapbooks they find their place in our family's journey. So it is with the Bible," said Helmick.
Helmick believes that preserving histories is important.
"Churches have important, and often fascinating, stories. Capturing and preserving those records along the way is vital to identity."
In photographing the buildings, Helmick has discovered there is a wide variety of expression across the spectrum of faith here in Webster County.
"Some churches lift up the ideals of simplicity with buildings that may seem plain at first. Others are elaborately ornate, a feast for all the senses when you cross the threshold."
Each is unique.
Helmick received photography training both during college and, more recently, as a graduate of the New York Institute of Photography. She is the managing editor for the Fort Dodge Today magazine and does some freelance writing as well.
"Churches of Webster County" will be available in November. The Messenger is publishing the book, which is being offered for a special price of $42 through Sept. 15.
After that date, the price for the full-color, hand-bound, hardcover volume will be $52. Order forms are available in the newspaper, at The Messenger office, or online at www.messengernews.net.