Andy Raines had a difficult school life.
During that time, educators and staff were not as knowledgeable about attention-deficit disorder and dyslexia. Initially, Raines had the odds stacked against him, but by the age of 30 he was determined to overcome, returning to school and graduating with honors as well as a 4.0 GPA.
The next 20 years were spent as a successful youth minister, and while he was happy with his vocation, he felt he still could do more. Those around him encouraged him to use his experiences growing up with self-doubt and frustration regarding personal success to reach out and evangelize to people who may be “drifting and lost.”
That passion took the form of art, something Raines had not previously explored. Since 2009, he has completed more than 5,000 religious-themed paintings. Traveling extensively, the painter and musician has taken his talents on the road, appearing at county fairs, town festivals and just about any other venue open to an exhibit. Before long, churches were booking him for retreats and revivals.
Raines will display his art and create a painting beginning at 6 p.m. Monday, Oct. 19, at the Quarter Auction Vendors for Charity at the Granite City Township Hall, 2060 Delmar.
“You can do what you want with your life with having belief in yourself and allowing God in your lives,” Raines tells people who come to see his work. “It was hope that helped save me and I know firsthand if you have hope, you can survive.”
Cross Church in Carlinville displays 40 of Raines’ paintings on its campus, and Pastor Tim Rhodes and his congregation have the artist back on a regular basis to speak at retreats.
“We bought one of his paintings at Mount Vernon Christian Days and we love it,” area resident Kristen Drake says.
Raines makes appearances at churches of all faiths and denominations. For information on bookings and his artwork, call (618) 225-0604 or email email@example.com. For information on the event, visit the Facebook page at Quarter Auction Vendors for Charity.