Fair Haven Ministries
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Fueling a Passion for God
a place of giving and healing
The Quilters meet the first and third Tuesday of every month, all year long, from 8:30am-noon, to make quilts. No experience required to be a part of this ministry. About once a month, 30 quilts are delivered to the Spectrum Health Chaplain who distributes them the patients who need comfort. Each quilt is prayed over along with a prayer for the patient receiving it.
The Quilters have received many notes from patients and families about what this gift of love has meant. Some of their stories are below.
Sunday, May 1, 2009
I was visiting a patient on 4S today. Her name was Betty. Betty was in her 70's; She is recovering from her third stroke. I don't know when the first two occurred; sometime over the past 5-6 years.
Today, Betty shared she didn't want to be a burden to others. She is youngest of ten children. Four have died thus far. She is not used to having people take care of her. She is used to taking care of others. For this, Betty feels somewhat guilty. I don't like people taking care of me either. But sometimes that has to be the case.
Betty mentioned that following her second stroke, she was a patient at Blodgett. I mentioned I used to work there (as a chaplain). She replied, “I remember you! You gave me that quilt! I still have it! Just like a child, it was my ‘security blanket’ to help get through it!” She added that her husband uses it now. His health is going down and it brings him comfort also. She then stated, “I would have to fight him over it to get it back!” She then gave me a hug and thanked me for the quilt. It had meant a lot to her.
In addition to this, Betty asked about what was new in my life. I mentioned the adoption of my daughter from China. She said she had a Chinese granddaughter as well! Her daughter and husband traveled to China ten years ago for their adoption.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
It is sad when a daughter cannot be with her father as he is dying. That was the case with a patient on 6N tonight. Even though he was divorced, Tom did not die completely alone. His two sisters and their husbands were there. They were the only family who could be with him this evening. He lived a hard life of alcoholism and had other personal issues.
I offered a “comfort quilt” to this family. They were thrilled with the idea. It was received with much appreciation. I offered prayer of blessing on it. The family was grateful. The sisters said they would send it to Tom's daughter in Colorado who could not be here. It was to be his “Final Gift” to his daughter. It was a nice ending to an otherwise sad situation.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
I was notified of a patient who had been made "Comfort Care" on 5HC. He is a 72-year old and member of a local church. I will call him John. His wife and two children were with him as well. I spoke to his wife, Sandy. She did not want John to suffer and was ready to let him go. His condition was deteriorating. They had been married for nearly 50 years. For many of those years, he was away from God and did not attend a church. It was only in the past nine years that John came back to the Lord and was committed to being involved in church.
I picked out a quilt that I thought would go well for John. It is spring so I chose a blue and maize one. The colors seemed were very bright and seemed just right for a gentleman. Sandy emphasized to avoid a pink, flowery quilt for obvious reasons! I brought the quilt to Sandy, thinking she would like it. However, Sandy declined this particular quilt. She said John would not like the colors at all–maize and blue– because he was a Spartan fan! To him, these colors represented the enemy!
Nevertheless, I went back to the Pastoral Care office to pick out another one. This time I picked one that was red with some green and blue along with other colors. Sandy very much liked it. She said it was ideal for her husband.
After placing the quilt on his bed, Sandy asked me how much it cost. She was quite surprised it was free. I even told Sandy we referred to the quilts as “Comfort Quilts” because it brings God's comforting presence to patients and families. Sandy said she will refer to the quilt is my “Holy Spirit.” I asked what she meant by that. She replied the Holy Spirit is our Comforter and she saw the quilt as being as the Comforter for her husband and herself in the midst of her grieving and sadness.
Thursday, October 12, 2007
A nurse asked me to get a quilt for a patient who was dying. I met the family and explained our “Comfort Quilts.” The family was receptive about it. I asked what color she would like. They replied anything but purple!
I then found a blue and gold Afghan. I brought it to the family and they loved it! They said she was a Michigan Wolverines fan and would have loved it!
Friday, February 1, 2008
A patient died today on 6HC. I gave a “Comfort Quilt” to the patient last night. Today, I had to go back there for Gift of Life Donation. Family told me they had been discussing what should be become with the “Comfort Quilt” that was given to the patient. They decided that it should be passed on to each new great-grandchild that comes into the family. The quilt would be given at each baby shower to other great-grandchildren to come.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
There is a man dying on SHC tonight. He and his wife have been married for over sixty years. I picked out a quilt without looking it over carefully. As I opened it up to place it on the patient's bed, I saw there were four large squares. Each square had a house on it. I asked the wife if this quilt was ok because I did not have a chance to look it over. She said it was perfect. The houses (on the quilt) represented the home they made together.