New opportunity for Ministry in Action

I invite interested social knitters to join me in a Prayer Shawl Knitting Circle. Prayer Shawls (also called Comfort Shawls) are homemade throws, each made in a spirit of love and blessing for the intended recipient. This meaningful activity, when shared, also offers a wonderful opportunity to get to know people on a different level, thereby contributing to building our beloved community.

What particularly appeals to me about this ministry is how the creation of a prayer shawl is a spiritual practice for the maker. As I’ve experienced knitting, the rhythmic activity brings on a contemplative, even healing, mindset. The process of making a shawl — using one’s hands and focused intentions, your own prayers and loving thoughts — becomes gift not only for the one receiving the shawl, but for the knitter as well. Knitting in a group adds the benefits of socialization and shared good will.

“Shawls … made for centuries universal and embracing, symbolic of an inclusive, unconditionally loving, God. They wrap, enfold, comfort, cover, give solace, mother, hug, shelter and beautify. Those who have received these shawls have been uplifted and affirmed, as if given wings to fly above their troubles…”   –Written in 1998 by: Janet Severi Bristow (Cofounder of Shawl Ministry)

For more information, check out www.shawlministry.comshawl

In making prayer shawls, 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 stitch.

Our shawls can be intended for members of First Churches. They may also be given to members of the wider community.

You do not need to be an expert knitter to join; the basic pattern relies on a simple combination of knit and purl. I anticipate more experienced knitters will gladly help novices gain ease and confidence. All you need is a desire for group companionship in a meaningful activity.

To make this ministry accessible, I propose two time slots.

First meeting, (includes discussing the meaning, making, and uses of Prayer/Comfort Shawls at):

Evening Prayer Shawl Circle gathering — Tuesday February 17th at 6:30 pm at Jeanne’s home

Daytime Prayer Shawl Circle gathering — Wednesday February 18th at 1:30 pm, in the church Parlor

Interested? Want to know what supplies you need to bring? Please express your interest and intention by calling 413-584-9392.

I look forward to sharing the manifold rewards of knitting with you!

Jeanne Fenton