At Moravian Church synods, delegates are often on the receiving end of prayers and best wishes from Moravians around the country. At the 2014 Synod, those prayers, best wishes and love took the form of beautifully-crafted prayer shawls, one for each delegate.
In a service on Friday morning, the Rev. Maggie Wellert, pastor of Great Kills Moravian Church in Staten Island, blessed more than 400 shawls that were knitted or crocheted by Moravians and denominational partners from across the U.S. and Canada.
Championed by Wellert and coordinated by Kate Reynolds, what started as a small idea turned into a major undertaking involving many Womens’ Fellowships and individuals.The effort to offer a prayer shawl to all delegates at this Synod began nearly two years ago.
When introducing the effort in 2012, Wellert wrote, “It is our hope and prayer that with these shawls, those who are serving as delegates to the 2014 Synod will feel the warmth and love of our Holy God, and feel the support and love of each member of each congregation scattered across the Northern Province.”
During the service, Wellert recounted the story of how the colorful shawls arrived at Synod. Before being shipped to Bethlehem, congregations prayed over each shawl. Shawls were then tagged with the prayer, “May you be lifted up in hope; surrounded by joy; and graced with peace. These blessings are only possible through the love of God.”
As the service came to a close, each delegate selected a shawl, stood in a large circle around the hall and sang the hymn “Bind Us Together, Lord.”
Throughout the rest of Synod, those shawls will be a constant reminder of the love and prayers from many for their important work on behalf of all Moravians across the Northern Province.
For more on the 2014 Synod of the Moravian Church Northern Province, click here.