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Home : Community : Customer Gallery : Within a Year

Customer Projects - Get Inspired

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Within a Year
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The Prayer Shawl Ministry at Carmel Lutheran Church was born out of tragedy. The ministry founder, Kate Rosebrough, had received a prayer shawl after the stillbirth of her fourth child, daughter, Syndey, at 35 weeks. Wanting to give back for all the love and support that Kate and her family found in the kindness of strangers, Kate and her family joined our church, and Kate founded the Prayer Shawl Ministry by placing an article in our monthly newsletter looking for volunteers to make Prayer Shawls.

Only one crafter replied to Kate’s plea. However, together we found that we were a perfect compliment to lead this ministry. But even we did not see what God had in store.

Kate was three months pregnant with their fifth child when I first met with her to discuss the details of the ministry. Needless to say, she was very nervous. It had not yet been a year since the loss of Sydney. Between the additional doctor’s appointments and lab tests, and taking care of her other three children, she found time to work out the concepts for the ministry. My part was to make the concepts a reality.

Our first miracle came during a Ministry Fair at our church where we encouraged ten more people to “think about” the Prayer Shawl Ministry. Overnight, our numbers had multiplied by five!

Our next miracle came in May 2007 with the birth of Kate’s healthy baby girl, Jenna. Jenna was the happy recipient of our very first official Prayer Shawl. (picture included)

During its first year of existence, the Prayer Shawl Ministry at Carmel Lutheran Church continued to serve as a witness for many miracles. That first year saw over 40 prayers shawls crafted and donated by approximately 20 crafters consisting of both church members and non-members. Roughly half of the donated shawls were given out to those that were dying, struggling, or celebrating.

But the numbers only tell half of the story. The real gauge for success or failure of this ministry has not been the number of shawls, or the number of crafters, but the way that each shawl has touched many lives. From the thank-you notes that the ministry has received, we know that a shawl comforted a woman who faced breast cancer surgery alone; we know that a man who suffers with a very invasive form of cancer naps in his chair during the day wrapped in his prayer shawl; we know that a dying woman found peace and comfort in her shawl; and we know that several babies who have had a difficult time entering this world have found warmth in their shawls, while there parents have found comfort in knowing that an entire ministry was praying for their little baby. From these stories and notes, we can claim the first year of the Prayer Shawl Ministry as a success!

And the Good News doesn’t stop there, the crafters tell similar stories of how they have found peace in making the shawls, or how co-workers have joined together to help support this ministry even though they are not members of Carmel Lutheran. The Holy Spirit has touched so many people in such wonderful ways!

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