From the Winona Times in 2010
Note: Morris Doler is now a resident of Louisville.
By Amanda Sexton
Editor and Publisher
WINONA – Just two miles east of Highway 51 on Highway 82, after the sun sets, motorists will catch a glimpse of an illuminated cross standing in the center of rolling farm land. It was erected with the hope of lifting the spirits of those passing by.
Morris Doler, a Winona farmer and cattleman, constructed the cross after building a similar one at a local church. For the past four or five years, it has stood in his pasture, illuminated during the Easter season. A purple scarf is draped across the cross, and Doler plans to change it to a white scarf after Easter Sunday.
“When I look at it, I think of the sin debt that I own that Christ paid for me,” Doler said.
Originally, the cross, flanked by two angels, was illuminated only at Christmas, but eventually, Doler decided to celebrate the Christian faith’s most sacred day as well.
“It has been up every since I built it,” Doler said. “I usually [cut the lights out] after the 40 days and Easter.”
Doler said he hopes the cross will enrich the lives of everyone that sees it and reminds them of the sacrifice Christ made for the sins of mankind.
“People from far and wide comment on it to me,” Doler said. “People really seem to like it.”
A member of First Baptist Church of Winona, Doler and his wife, JeNell, are strong in their faith and spend much of their free time doing outreach programs in other communities.
Since the disaster of Hurricane Katrina, the couple has traveled to the gulf coast at least once a year to help with the rebuilding efforts in New Orleans, Bay St. Louis and Waveland. Working through Lake Shore Church, located on the coast, the Dollars have worked clean up and helped rebuild facilities and homes.
“We have gutted a lot of houses that weren’t condemned, so people can live in them again,” Doler said.
A native of Montgomery County, Doler lives on over a hundred acre farm first purchased by his grandfather. Except for two years in the U.S. Army and a year in Pontotoc,
This article was written about Doler in 2010 and he resides in Winston County now.