Comfort Shawl Program
A comfort shawl or comfort lap blanket is created to bring solace and strength to those in need, whether due to illness, loss or bereavement or to help celebrate one of life's rites of passage. Made by loving hands, they are symbols of God's all-embracing love and comfort. Positive energy, prayers and good intentions directed toward the recipient are incorporated into these mantles as they are created.
Anyone facing one of life's transitions, whether it be a sad or joyous time, can benefit from being wrapped in love. The Messenger Interfaith Prayer Center has over 60 volunteers – employees, family members and friends, who create these mantles and donate them to the Program. These volunteers give of their own time and funds to keep the program going.
Each shawl or blanket is blessed upon completion, and again when delivered by the requestor, whether it be a nurse, staff member, a member of Pastoral Care department, or a family member. The blessing is shared with the recipient, and those present. In the years since the program started, several hundred shawls have been presented, both to patients, family members, and others. In many cases the program receives thanks from the recipient or their families, stories of comfort and peace for the patient, and the loved ones often left behind. Shawls have also been given to retiring staff, given in celebration of new beginnings, and sometimes to help someone through a difficult time.
For additional information, to request a shawl, to donate a shawl, or yarn, or to sponsor a shawl please contact the Pastoral Care department at (203 576-5110) or Katalin Gyorgyey, in the Health Sciences Library at (203) 576-5337.
The Shawl Blessing
May God’s grace be upon this shawl or blanket- warming, comforting, enfolding and embracing. May this mantle be a safe haven- a sacred place of security and well being, sustaining and embracing in good times as well as difficult times. May the one who receives this blanket be cradled in hope, kept in joy, graced with peace, and wrapped in love. AMEN.