The Last Supper was painted by Richard G. Grabher, a member of Hope, in 1978. He loved to paint and draw cartoons, especially Donald Duck and Snoopy.
Mr. Grabher first came up with the idea to paint the "The Last Supper" when he went on a business trip to Italy in 1977, and was inspired by Michelangelo's frescos in the Sistine Chapel. He knew that Hope's new sanctuary had a large wall to the right of the alter and felt it would be perfect for a painting of The Last Supper.
The Last Supper took approximately 18 months to paint. The canvas that it was painted on was donated by the DuPont Company. The paints used were ordinary acrylic house paint. The canvas was placed on a homemade scroll and painted in 6 foot sections in Mr. Grabher's basement. The painting is 16 feet long and 6 feet high and weighs over 400lbs. It took 6 to 8 men to lift that painting on to the brackets that holds the picture up. Mr. Grabher passed away 18 months after The "Last Supper" painting was dedicated, at the age of 48.
The frame that surrounds the Last Supper was also made by a member of Hope Lutheran Church, Mr. William D. Beck. Mr. Beck loved to work with wood. The frame consists of hundreds of 4 x 4 inch individual pieces of wood that were glued together to make the frame. This process was very time consuming and required a lot of patience. Mr. Beck was very involved with different activities at Hope. He was an usher, he helped on the property committee, he painted and fixed things around the church. Mr. Beck was very involved in the Scouting Program at Hope. Mr. Beck has since passed away and is truly missed by his family and his family at Hope.
Mr. Grabher's Last Supper painting was dedicated on Palm Sunday 1979.
Hope Lutheran Church was truly blessed to have the talents of these two men. It is a wonderful reminder that God gives all of us many talents and gifts that we can use to serve his church!