The Battle of Caelum Moor: A True Story
by Michael Tummillo
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It was January of 1986. I remember hearing that singer Ricky Nelson had been killed in a plane crash when a fire broke out in his small plane. They were headed to Dallas to do a New Year’s Eve performance as I recall. In China, thousands of students had just spent twenty days protesting for democracy and the demonstrations spread from Shanghai to Beijing, culminating three years later with that unforgettable massacre in Tiananmen Square in June of 89.
Deep in the heart of Texas, we were fighting a different kind of battle. When I say we I’m referring to the Christians in the city of Arlington. It was a spiritual battle, one which, I now realize, we had no business being involved in.
Not that way.
Not the way we did it. Fact is, despite our kicking of the largest hornet’s nest any of us could have ever imagined, the vast majority of Arlington Christians were unaware that there was a battle raging among them at all.
Making matters worse, in my opinion, those who dared to get involved were clueless as to how it was supposed to have been waged and fought. Like the charge of the Light Brigade, our well-intentioned heroics proved meaningless and devastating to the local Church.
My hope, and my reason for writing this treatise is that, despite the many teachings by spiritual leaders on the subject of Spiritual Warfare in books, from pulpits, and on Christian television across the USA, that someone, somewhere, will read it and spare themselves and their community the agony of what one well-meaning but misguided Church Body in Texas went through...and the spiritual, unrelenting backlash that ensued.
Norm Hines was a graduate and tenured professor of art at Pamona College in Claremont, California in 1984 when he was commissioned by Jane Mathes Kelton, CEO and COB of the Kelton Mathes Development Corporation (and an heir to the Scottish-American television magnet, Curtis Mathes), to take on the Caelum Moor project. It was a monumental work of art that would become the signature and focal point of The Highlands Business Park, a 340-acre multi-use business community in Arlington, Texas.
Norm made$1.5 million for the project, a task that would take him over two years to complete. The sculpture would consist of 540 tons of freestanding pink Texas granite - 22 pieces in all, ranging from 15 to 34 feet high - and was named Caelum after a remote constellation in the Southern skies which comes from a Latin word meaning “sculptor’s tool," and Moor after the windswept, mystical moors of Scotland. The Stonehenge-like work of art, situated on 5.5 acres of a gently rolling park, included a small, winding lake, a fountain, seasonal landscaping, and a 350-seat natural amphitheater. The stones were set into 5 separate groupings, each being given its own Celtic name including Tan Tara, De’Danaan, Morna Linn, Tolmen Barrow and Sarsen Caer. Caelum Moor was one of the largest environmental sculptures in the Western Hemisphere.
From 1986 until 1997, this collection of twenty-two pinkish stones stood at the headwaters of Johnson Creek in Arlington. I vividly recall driving back to my home in DeSoto, through Arlington from Fort Worth in ‘86 when I was passed on my left by a rambling convoy of some sixteen 18-wheeler flatbed trucks carrying the enormous pink stones for what was to become known as Caelum Moor. Instantly, I knew they would be trouble in whatever place they wound up. I never once considered that the stones were headed for Arlington. I figured they were just passing through.
Boy, was I wrong.
In time, Caelum Moor - and the war that we waged over that piece of ground - would be broadcast on CNN, FOX, Dallas-Fort Worth television, and in newspapers and on web sites all over the planet.
How it all began... In those days, I was attending a "Bapti-Costal" church called Arlington Christian Center (ACC) which boasted of having 3,000 members. ACC was located on Bardin Road and was situated on the (please write Pastor Michael at firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain this book in its entirety)
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