Joyce Mancinelli
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Prayers & Squares is an interfaith outreach organization that combines the gift of prayer with the gift of a hand-tied quilt. Unlike many other groups that make quilts for charitable causes, the purpose of Prayers & Squares is not to make and distribute quilts, but to promote prayer through the use of quilts. Our motto is: "It's not about the quilt; it's all about the prayers." Each Knot Represents a Prayer 

The idea behind these prayer quilts is simple. A heavy thread is used to take stitches through the quilt layers, and the ends are left free to be tied with a square knot. As each knot is tied, a silent prayer is offered for someone in need – someone who has asked us to pray for them. The quilt is then given to that person. What makes each quilt unique is not the pattern, color, or workmanship, but the fact that prayer is symbolically tied into each one.These "comforters" are a statement of faith, and a testimony to our belief in God and in the power of prayer.

Member Chapters agree to follow these "Three Com- mandments" of Prayers & Squares:
1. Remember the Prayers & Squares motto: “It’s not about the quilt, it’s all about the prayers.”  
The purpose of your ministry must be to promote an active prayer life among the participants, not just to make and give away quilts. Strive to involve as many people as possible in your prayer efforts.

2. You must ASK before you give the gift of a prayer quilt; surprises are not appropriate. Ask if the person to receive the quilt will accept your gift of prayer. Ask what they would like you to pray for. Ask what information about their situation may be shared with others.


3. Do not accept any form of payment for a prayer quilt; it is a gift of love and prayer which cannot be bought or sold. Those who request or receive prayer quilts must not be made to feel obligated to Prayers & Squares in any way.

Some of these points may seem obvious to you. Who would try to put a price tag on a prayer quilt? But you may wonder about the second point. Often people would prefer to surprise someone with the gift of a prayer quilt. That's the way gifts are usually given, right? But we have found through experience that a surprise prayer quilt may be an inappropriate gift in some cases. Of course, we agree that everyone could benefit from the gift of prayer, but stop to consider how this particular gift is made. The recipient might not be comfortable being a "prayer focus". And confidentiality. How much information would that person like to have shared? We not only ask for permission before making the prayer quilt, we also ask what prayers they would like us to offer on their behalf.

Our starter kit for Prayers and Squares arrived this week. The pattern selected for the first top is the old "Grandmother's Flower Garden" because it is hand sewn and we don't have to worry about perfect 1/4 inch seams! We'll get started at our next Craft Morning, so hunt out your needles!