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Home : Community : Customer Gallery : In September 2005, I attended a conference wide...
 

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In September 2005, I attended a conference wide...
Created By: Donna Chandler

In September 2005, I attended a conference wide Church workshop. One of the classes offered was "How to start a Knitting Ministry". I had knitted about 10 years ago. I knitted a sweater for all the members of my immediate family and stopped half way through the back on the sweater for me. We were building a new home and I packed it away till my life slowed down. As I looked at the title, something in me decided it was time to pick back up the needles. The class was 20 minutes long and a lady told the basics of how to start a Prayer Shawl Ministry in your church. She had printed off some basic instructions and some of the poems from the book, "Knitting into the Mystery". As I read the poem on grief, my thoughts immediately when to a young mother in our congregration that had recently lost her husband to cancer. I didn't know her personally, but had watched her from afar and admired the way she loved and cared for her 3 small boys. I bought needles and thread on the way home. Surely I could reteach myself to knit. We went out of town the next day and I knitted all weekend. We stopped at a Walmart and I bought my first skeins of Lion Brand Yarn for my first prayer shawl. It was candy apple red. I am not a red person, but it just spoke to me. I had no idea what color would be best for the lady from church. I knitted all the way home. The next day I e-mailed our pastor and asked if I could start a new ministry at the church. She listened to my thoughts and agreed it would be a good ministry for our church. I mailed letters to every member of our church. 21 were interested. We met the next week. Everyone knew someone who needed prayers and a shawl. The only problem was that there were only 4 of us that knew how to knit. We decided to meet once a week till everyone learned how to knit. Then we would meet once a month to bless the shawls. Well the group continues to evolve, but we still meet once a week. It has become a close knit group that treasures our time together in mission. There is an age range of 20 years olds to 80 years olds. We have been meeting for 19 months now, and I can't begin to come up with an accurate number of prayer shawls that have been given by the group. I alone have made 41. Not only has my life been changed, but all the lives of the ladies that knit and crocket. It is truly a mission of the heart and soul. The stories and letters we hear about the impact the shawls make, make it all worthwild. Back to the lady I made my first shawl for. When I went to her house to give her the shawl, I looked around and I'll bet you can guess, red was everywhere. It was one of her favorite colors. It is fun to see the many colors and how they reflect the knitter or the person who is to receive the shawl. Homespun is our yarn of choice. I'm sure we have used every color. The most surprising thing is that every shawl we knit is a new experience, because it revolved around the one we are praying for, and every situation is so different. Our local paper did a story on our group last year. From that article we have been contacted to help start prayer shawl ministries in our area. It's funny, I never think of it as a hobby. It's a prayer ministry. The mission just keeps spreading and touching more lives.


 
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