All Are Welcome >   The slogan for the God's Handiwork ministry is "Reaching others with the gifts God has given to us". Do you knit or crochet or sew? Would you enjoy making items to bless others? Then you are invited to find those knitting needles, crochet hooks or thread and join in the fun! If you aren't interested in making items but want to help with purchase of materials, donations to the Church for this ministry are gratefully received.

September 2018 Update >   During July I received an email with an update on the East Africa Preterm Birth Initiative Program 2018. I scanned through the many pages of pictures of the tiny babies with hats like we had made last September. On the last page there was a picture of a nurse holding up a bag of hats they had received and to my surprise I saw one of our tags that we attached to the many hats we had made, and next to it was a tag with my name on it. When you see the smile on her face you feel how much the little things we do can make such an impact on someone on the other side of the world.

When I was packing to go on my trip to Wells Beach Maine in July something made me pack some pocket prayer shawls in case I found someone who needed them. I feel like I should always have some in my car because I usually come across someone who I feel God puts in my path to reach out to. Shortly after I arrived at the motel I met a nice couple who was staying there because their house was flooded in Wells. They thought it was only going to be for a few days and it turns out it would be three weeks but our "dog friendly" motel only had a few more days of vacancies so they were worried about where they would go with their dog. I spent quite awhile talking to them and could see how anxious they were and thought a pocket prayer shawl would be some reassurance that God was with them even in the difficult times. The next day I was returning home and while packing my car they came out and told me how wonderful receiving the pocket prayer shawl was and they were feeling sorry for themselves and said it was really comforting to them. As I was turning in my key to the office I also gave the owner's mom a pocket prayer shawl because she had recently lost her husband. The moral is to always have one on hand because God will put people in your path that could use a little comfort that you could provide to them.

Please consider helping us reach out to those who need our care and prayers. If you need any patterns or yarn please let me know before Sunday and I will have the supplies for you.

Marybeth Wheelock

Prayer Shawls >   In 1998, Janet Bristow and Victoria Galo, two graduates of the 1997 Women's Leadership Institute at The Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Connecticut gave birth to a ministry as a result of their experience in this program of applied Feminist Spirituality under the direction of Professor Miriam Therese Winter, MMS. Compassion and the love of knitting/crocheting have been combined into a prayerful ministry and spiritual practice which reaches out to those in need of comfort and solace, as well as in celebration and joy. Many blessings are prayed into every shawl.

Whether they are called Prayer Shawls, Comfort Shawls, Peace Shawls, or Mantles, etc., the shawl maker begins with prayers and blessings for the recipient. The intentions are continued throughout the creation of the shawl. Upon completion, a final blessing is offered before the shawl is sent on its way. Some recipients have continued the kindness by making a shawl and passing it onto someone in need. Thus, the blessing ripples from person-to-person, with both the giver and receiver feeling the unconditional embrace of a sheltering, mothering God!

From 2005 to 2015 we have given out 680 shawls. They have been given to our families, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and many people that we do not know. The shjawls have made journeys to places all over the world. When some recipients die, they are buried with their shawl.

(*The shawls can also be crocheted, quilted, woven or machine knitted as well!)


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