By Nancy Devereux, Immigrant and Refugee Justice Ministry
Maybe you’ve noticed that, every week in the Chalice, there is a call for knitted or crocheted squares. If you’ve ever wondered what that means, let me explain.
It all began with the UUFR Refugee and Immigrant Team’s sponsorship of a newly arriving refugee family last fall in partnership with the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants. UUFR members donated furniture and household goods, and our team used them to furnish an apartment for a family of seven arriving from the Central African Republic.
But what warmed the hearts of the arriving family most was the hand-stitched blanket we left on their bed, made with 35 10-inch squares – all different colors, styles and textures made by caring, welcoming hands. Out of many, there is one.
Later, in an English as a second language class sponsored by the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, I was able to explain to the father of the family that the squares were made by many people, all of whom welcome his family and wish them warmth and safety. “We hold you in our hearts,” I told him.
His chin trembled and his eyes faintly scrunched and then his stoicism returned.
Now, there are other refugee families soon to arrive, and UUFR can give them the same gift. Making these blankets reminds us that we can all do something to help others and every action does matter. And we knit to strengthen the raveling fibers of the world and to heal ourselves.
We accept squares from any knitter or crocheter. Please take time to check your stitch gauge, because squares must be as close to 10×10 as possible in order to be used in the blanket. Squares should be made from machine washable yarn. They may be dropped off Mondays-Thursdays from 10:00 am-4:00 pm or on Sundays in the office or the office workroom.