Prayer Shawl Ministry

Prayer Shawl Ministry

The Prayer Shawl Ministry knits or crochets shawls that are then passed along to those in need of comfort or solace.  In 2004 a ministry began here in Chewelah.  This ecumenical group (from St. Mary of the Rosary, St. Paul Lutheran, and United Church of Christ) has created and presented over 400 shawls.

The shawls take several weeks to complete so the seven regular knitters and others who contribute shawls crafted at home are kept busy.  If you would like to participate, the group meets twice a month on the second and fourth Tuesdays.  Cash donations for yarn are always appreciated since it costs approximately $20 per shawl.  For those who want to knit or crochet a shawl but can’t afford the yarn, there is some stock available.

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

Some uses for the shawl…

Shawls can be used for: undergoing medical procedures; as a comfort after a loss or in times of stress; during bereavement; prayer or meditation; commitment or marriage ceremonies; birthing, nursing a baby; bridal shower or wedding gift; leading ritual; first menses or croning rites of passage; during an illness and recovery; ministering to others; graduation, birthday, anniversary, ordination, holiday gifts; or just socializing…there are endless possibilities!

To make a shawl personal, the giver or the recipient may want to adorn the shawl with beads, shells, feathers and charms.  A blessing or ritual maybe offered when the gift is presented.

Consider joining this great ministry to provide an outreach to our community.