YMCA of Youngstown to Dedicate Sculpture in May

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The YMCA of Youngstown will dedicate its sculpture titled “When I Was a Stranger” next month.

The dedication will take place at 10 a.m. May 4 in front of the Central YMCA, 17 N. Champion St. 

The donation of the work, by Canadian sculptor Timothy Schmalz, was funded by private donations from Tom and Adele Gacse and the Kidston family.

The 2022 sculpture portrays the passage of Scripture in Matthew 25:35 and is called “When I Was a Stranger.” The passage reads: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” 

Schmalz is known for his sculpting work focusing on various religious figures.

The sculpture is one of six that depicts Matthew 25:35-40. Youngstown is one of four cities that have all six of the Mathew 23 sculptures. The other three cities are Detroit, Cleveland and Rome, Italy.

The Central Y has been a part of the community for 139 years. Housing was provided on its upper floors during the 1900s, and immigrants were welcomed to Youngstown from around the world.

“It is fitting to have ‘When I Was a Stranger’ at our Y because the Y is a welcoming place where all can belong.” said Tom Gacse, president and CEO of the YMCA of Youngstown. “The Central Y has a rich history of welcoming strangers.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.