My warmest memories are of wrapping up one of my girls in a beach towel after they have played in the water and snuggling with them to get them warmed up again so that they can go back in the water to play. Wrapping them up and holding them close to me was one of the things I enjoyed most as my girls where growing up. I still like to wrap my arms around them holding them close to me. Being wrapped in warmth whether in the summer or in the winter, like your hands around a warm cup of coffee or cocoa, is one of the best feelings.
Our prayer shawls do the same thing. They wrap around someone who is going through a rough time, bringing them comfort. Our prayer shawls remind those who are given the shawls that they are not alone as they struggle with the pain of losing someone close or dealing with a life threatening illness. Our baptism shawls remind parents that they are not alone in raising their child. We have a whole congregation to be living examples of Christs’ love. Our wedding shawls remind couples to include God in their marriage, as well as in their wedding. Every time I see a shawl, I’m reminded that God’s love is wrapped around each of His children.
This time of year we remember that God sent Jesus into our world as an infant; as Luke 2:7 says, “And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.” Mary wrapped baby Jesus up in bands of cloth; our knitters wrap shawls around those who need to know that God’s love is always with them.
Each shawl is blessed with a prayer and blessed with the hands that have made them. A card with a prayer goes with each shawl and we record where each one goes. I’ve heard that many of these shawls bring not only warmth but contentment knowing that they are wrapped in God’s love. These shawls are cherished by those who have been given them. The shawl ministry is one of the visible reminders that God is near to us when we are going through a difficult time or a joyful time such as a baptism or wedding.
Our shawl knitters gather to knit on Wednesday evenings starting at 5:30pm. They knit and pray together, encouraging each other, laughing with one another and welcoming all who come to sit with them. Our knitters would love to have more knitters join them on Wednesdays. You bring your needles; we’ll supply the yarn and the fellowship to do this important ministry. Our knitters are a blessing to all who receive a shawl and are blessed through their service of knitting. So far this year; we have given away 47 shawls and we have only a few adults shawls left. If you’ve been a knitter for years or are just starting out, you and your knitting needles will be welcomed into this group.
I hope that our knitters will continue to be blessed through their service of knitting and that one or more men or women, young or old, will join in the blessing of knitting for others.