I am a big believer in the power of prayer shawls to create a sense of peace and well being. The idea behind prayer shawls is that while knitting/crocheting the shawl you pray for the person receiving the shawl. I am also a big believer in prayer as many of the regular readers on this blog will be aware. When I read that Allfreeknitting.com and Allfreecrochet.com were participating in an initiative to collect prayer shawls for Rush University Medical System I knew I needed to spread the word.
I think it was about 16 years ago that the movement to create prayer shawls came to my attention. I remember thinking what an absolutely beautiful way to use my talent for knitting/crocheting and at the same time encourage someone through prayer. If I remember correctly (it was a while ago) The Waiting Room Ministry was my first introduction to the purpose of and patterns for prayer shawls. (the site has since been archived) At the time I really was spending hours of my life in waiting rooms between caring for my kids and trying to discover the source of my own health problems. It seemed appropriate to create something to help others during this time of waiting. There are websites with specific blessings or prayers you can use while creating a prayer shawl.
Allfreeknitting (AFK) and Allfreecrochet's (AFC) Prayer Shawls for Charity drive is bringing attention to the interplay between prayer and craft. That's always a good thing. I find that knitting or crocheting a prayer shawl is a welcome respite from all the negativity around us. Focusing instead on doing good with our hands and our hearts. The bonus being that this is that Red Heart Yarns provides even more incentive! When you donate your shawl you'll be entered into a drawing to win $100 worth of your choice in Red Heart Yarns! (personally I like Red Heart Stripes yarn)
There are requirements for the shawls. Quoting from AFK:
While both AFC and AFK offer pattern suggestions let me make a few of my own.
Knitters if you belong to Ravelry I suggest you go directly to Lois Chicquette's Ravery page. So many great shawls, SO little time! :)
Crocheters have so many great choices in the patterns for bulky weight yarns:
I think this is a great cause and with the added benefit of a drawing! Lets get all those needles and hooks flying! I hope you'll join Allfreeknitting and Allfreecrochet in blessing the patients at Rush University Medical Center! (Remember shawls postmarked by November 15) Please, leave a comment on the AFK or AFC site if you do decide to join in.
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**Opinions expressed on blogs about which I write are the opinion of the blog authors and DO NOT necessarily reflect my own opinion.