Prayer Shawl Ministry
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
One of the greatest joys I have serving as a Parish Nurse, is when God provides an opportunity to share His love through the gift of a prayer shawl. This congregational ministry provides a tangible reminder of God’s love, healing, comfort, and support to a person who may be in the midst of loss, illness, or even joy. This ministry has been in place for many years at Our Savior Lutheran Church, Fair Lawn, long before I became a Parish Nurse. So many congregations I meet with tell me about their own Prayer Shawl Ministries as well. This month, I wanted to share just some of the prayer shawl ministry ideas that have been shared with me over the last ten years! Perhaps God is leading your congregation to develop or implement a prayer shawl ministry as well.
What is a prayer shawl ministry?
A prayer shawl ministry is led by volunteer knitters and crocheters, turning yarn into wraps, shawls, or blankets that are interwoven with prayers. Those who receive these handmade expressions of love will have a tangible reminder of God’s love for them. Once a group of prayer shawls have been created, sometimes they are given a special blessing by the pastor, before they are delivered.
How can someone get involved in a prayer shawl ministry?
There are four ways to support a congregational prayer shawl ministry.
1. You can knit or crochet a prayer shawl.
2. You can support the ministry with a small donation to help purchase the yarn.
3. You can pray for the ministry.
4. You can help by delivering a prayer shawl to someone in need.
Who might benefit from a prayer shawl?
Prayer shawls can be a comfort to new moms, individuals grieving, those serving in the military, those facing an illness or recovering from surgery, individuals in long term care settings, individuals struggling with mental health concerns, and for infants and families of premature babies. There are many other reasons why a
prayer shawl could be given!
Suggestions for prayer while making a prayer shawl or blanket:
Each month this year, Parish Nurse and Adult Ministries hopes to highlight a congregational ministry that you would like to learn more about, or begin in your own congregations. We also welcome your ministry ideas, and input if you currently already lead one of the ministries highlighted. Please email your input and ideas to Colleen Bottcher, Parish Nurse at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In His joy and service,
Colleen Bottcher RN, BSN, FCN
NJ District Parish Nurse