This year's Harlan United Methodist Church quilt show's theme was "Women of the Bible." The eight entries were displayed before the church's beautiful stain glass windows for an uplifting effect.
The quilt blocks are based on Carol Honderich's year-long study that connects 52 women of the Bible to a traditional quilt block to represent them.
Two years ago the parish women first gathered to start their quilts to discover the program did not include the actual patterns or templates to make the blocks. So experienced quilters work with the novice ones to get everyone started while contemplating the accompanying devotion together.
Once underway the women go their separate ways to complete their quilts calling upon each other when they hit a difficult patch.
Parishioner Louetta Yoder asks her sister Joyce Delagrange to assist her in making her quilt to honor their mother. Joyce says "yes" and the two sisters cut, sew and pray over their handiwork. Some blocks they embellish or change to better reflect their personal devotion. Over winter 2010 Louetta works on her blocks in sunny Florida while Joyce plies the needle on her blocks in snowy Spencerville, Indiana. When spring arrives the sisters reunite to sew the blocks together. As it turns out the quilt grew to be a queen size bedspread. God is Awesome!
Upon completion the quilt is taken to the Annual Mennonite Relief Sale to benefit people of various needs around the world. It is auctioned and sold to a gentleman from California for well over a thousand dollars. A year goes by and at the next auction the gentleman with the big heart returns and donates the quilt back so it is once again sold. The second successful bidder is Louetta's husband Earl.
So in a two-year period this special quilt symbolizing the faith, courage, wisdom and strength of bold biblical women travels from the Midwest to the West Coast, aids people from the USA to Asia to Africa comes back home to Woodburn, Indiana!
The 45th Annual Relief Sale will be held at the Elkhart County Fairgrounds in Goshen, Indiana on Saturday, September 22. For more information go to: http://mennonitesale.org/
Lois Eubank is the owner of Born Again Quilts. When she isn't restoring quilts she lectures, teaches, and sells vintage quilts all over the world at: bornagainquilts.etsy.com