Church offers homeless touch of warmth, safety Quilts made to give to shelter residents

November 01, 1993|By Angela Winter Ney | Angela Winter Ney,Staff writer

When life turns bad, all you want to do is curl up someplace safe.

Members of the Harundale Presbyterian Church gathered Saturday to try to create, in some small way, a sense of safety for the homeless by stitching quilts as gifts for them.

The quilts will go to people entering Sarah's House, a Fort Meade shelter run by Associated Catholic Charities of Baltimore.

"We're giving them real security blankets, something they'll receive when they arrive at Sarah's House, can hold onto while they're there and take with them when they leave," says Mickey Lloyd, 55, who is coordinating the effort.

Each quilt will bear a label in calligraphy that says: "This quilt comes to you with God's love and warmth."

Ms. Lloyd, a media specialist at Southern Middle School, said that she knows what it's like to go through difficult times.

So last spring, she decided to reach out to people in need. She and a friend, Rita Crow of Mayo, thought of the sewing project as a way to help.

A note in the church bulletin asked for volunteers, suggesting that they donate scraps of old clothing for quilt blocks and then come and help make the quilts.

"Your closets will be neater and your heart will be warmed," Ms. Lloyd wrote, hoping someone would respond. About 75 people from the Glen Burnie church did, along with local businesses and community members.

Men, women, teen-agers and children volunteered to help. People donated lunches for the workers. A Boy Scout group in Odenton collected fabric.

Ms. Lloyd originally intended to try to make 12 quilts. But so much help poured in that by the weekend, she had upped the estimate to 24.

The church was jampacked with dozens of fabric squares in varied colors for quilt-making, along with fabric to back the quilts, pins, thread and extra sewing machines.

Someone donated beachy-looking prints to be used for a quilt for a homeless teen-ager.

Another bag held teddy-bear fabric that would become a toddler's quilt. Ms. Lloyd showed off a fabric printed with horses. The pattern was being sewn into a Western-looking quilt with a navy and brown border.

People from a variety of religious faiths joined the project, as well as people from the neighborhood who had no church affiliation.

Someone brought soup. Someone else sewed labels for the quilts. A fabric store offered extra cotton.

"When you want to do a mission project, it can be done," said Ms. Lloyd, adding that the project could become an annual event.

"The Lord works in mysterious ways. Things have come together so well, I'm really hopeful," she said.

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