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Group stitches quilts 1,000 times over
One-thousand quilts later, well actually, 1,001, St. Luke’s Prayer Quilt Ministry is stitching on and pressing onto another milestone.
A group of women quilters presented four quilts on July 28 for blessing by the Rev. Bob Rhodes, bringing their total into four digits.
Virginia Reker, an original quilter with the group since it formed in 2004, said each quilt is lap-sized and made for people in need of prayers for comfort, healing and strength during surgery, illness and/or difficult times.
Parishioners request a quilt for themselves and/or a loved one in or outside of the congregation.
Permission always is needed before gifting a quilt. The latest four quilts went to non-church members, Reker said.
Quilts are labeled with the date, the recipient’s name and a psalm and then laid out for the congregation to tie square knots in the yarn while offering prayers. They are then taken to the altar to be blessed.
St. Luke’s group is one of 17 organizations with the “Prayers and Squares” organization in Washington.
Eight women sew with the club either at home or from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. each Monday in the church’s meeting hall, 525 N. Fifth Ave.
Each quilt has been chronicled in a book with a photo and a small note.
Reker said they range in themes from lighthouses to music to patriotism to animals.
Reker said she keeps doing it out of a love of sewing. She makes about two quilts a month.
“The whole congregation loves them, too,” she said of the club’s quilts.
JoAnn Haick has worked with the ministry for about six years spanning out her time with the church’s former military quilt ministry.
She said they still donate quilts to local recovering veterans and they absolutely love them.
Gerry Golightly was a recipient of a quilt after having a bad fall.
“It was nice to know people are thinking of you,” she said.
Shortly before the fall, she joined the group despite not being a member of the church.
“It’s a nice group,” she said. “We all exchange ideas. The church is so welcoming, it doesn’t matter where I go.”
Quilters donate a lot of the materials for the projects and the church allocates space and some funds for the club. For more information on the ministry, call 683-4862.