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Knitting Into the Mystery: A Guide to the Shawl-Knitting Ministry [Hardcover]

Susan S. Jorgensen , Susan S. Izard
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 25.76
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Book Description

Sept. 1 2003
Knitters-there are 38 million of them in the United States alone-are part of a long and quiet tradition that's both plainly practical and deeply spiritual. With needles clicking, they weave together not just garments to warm the body but also comfort and companionship to nurture the soul.

This tradition is flowering today through knitting ministries, a worldwide ecumenical movement of small groups of women who gather to pray and knit for those in need. As they create shawls for people burdened with illness and sorrow, their handiwork becomes an expression, not only of their love and concern, but also of the loving care of the God who works through them.

In this beautifully illustrated book, the authors-a United Church of Christ minister and a Roman Catholic laywoman-share stories of how the knitting ministry has touched lives and hearts around the world. They offer directions for knitting the shawls and for starting a parish or community knitting ministry. The book also provides a selection of prayers, written from many faith traditions, to offer along with each completed shawl.


Frequently Bought Together

Knitting Into the Mystery: A Guide to the Shawl-Knitting Ministry + New Prayer Shawl Companion, The: 35 Knitted Patterns to Embrace, Inspire, & Celebrate Life
Price For Both: CDN$ 35.03


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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Many contemplative, prayerful acts involve repetition of action: walking a labyrinth, reciting the Divine Office or saying the rosary. So why not knitting? As their needles flash and click, veteran knitters Jorgensen and Izard practice "contemplative knitting," which they say is just as real and fruitful a spiritual practice as any longstanding tradition of the church. Jorgensen, a Roman Catholic laywoman and spiritual director whose grandmother taught her to knit as a child, rediscovered knitting a few years ago and began to knit as part of her ministry. Her first project was a shawl for a woman in her congregation who had lost her husband in a car accident: "While I knitted, I prayed to enter her grief; I prayed light into every stitch," says Jorgensen. She chose an "Adirondack" pattern to honor the love that this woman and her husband had shared for the outdoors. Izard, a United Church of Christ pastor, shares stories from the shawl-knitting circle she organized at her church. The shawls change the lives of the knitters themselves, inviting them to engage in quiet meditation, and they also make an impact on the people who receive them, many of whom are recovering from illness or bereavement. Fans of knitting will be, shall we say, hooked: the book offers practical steps on selecting yarn and knitting simple prayer shawls, but its most enduring feature is the heartwarming stories of shawls knitted and given as artifacts of prayer.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Sit down with a group of knitters anywhere and ask them to tell you stories about how they learned to knit. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Most helpful customer reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spirituality and Knitting--Finally Nov. 28 2003
By cathy
Format:Hardcover
This book is the first I have seen that really emphasizes the spiritual quality of knitting. As someone who has long appreciated knitting, and the giving and recieving of knitted goods,as a meditative, healing process, it is wonderful to see my sentiments expressed so eloquently. I have given several shawls to both friends and strangers in need of the warmth and caring they provide, and I can assure you that I have never seen a gift so appreciated. There is something about the love and time put into a shawl, combined with their sheer, tactile beauty, that embues them with an intangible strength. If you are not yet a knitter, this book is an excellent introduction, and the shawls are an perfect beginning project. If you are an advanced knitter, the template provided is a blank canvas for your creativity. This book is a beautiful celebration of the joys of creation and the power of caring.
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spiritual Knitting Guide Dec 21 2003
Format:Hardcover
A wonderful book, chock full of inspirational quotes and stories, detailing the use of hand knitted shawls as medium of prayer for knitters, and as healing gifts for loved ones or strangers. A warning - this is not a pattern book or a technique book, it does not teach how to knit or provide intructions for any shawls. This is a book about the process of making shawls to help and comfort others in times of need, in times of celebration, or simply to mark the strength of the relationship between the knitter and the recipient. To me this book translated into words something I think most knitters instinctively know - knitted gifts provide comfort and warmth beyond what the materials alone of the garment would be able to provide. They carry with them the love and the warm wishes of the knitter. This book provides interesting suggestions for adding some sort of religious ritual to the process of knitting and gift-giving. Even if you're not into organized religion, you'll still be inspired. A great gift.
Was this review helpful to you?
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring !! March 2 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Absolutely lovely ! This book gave spiritual meaning to my knitting and so much added enjoyment. It provides basic instructions on how to make a prayer shawl using K3,P3 pattern and the rest of the book is a real joy to read. This book would be a wonderful gift to any knitter!!!
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.7 out of 5 stars  52 reviews
97 of 100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spiritual Knitting Guide Dec 21 2003
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
A wonderful book, chock full of inspirational quotes and stories, detailing the use of hand knitted shawls as medium of prayer for knitters, and as healing gifts for loved ones or strangers. A warning - this is not a pattern book or a technique book, it does not teach how to knit or provide intructions for any shawls. This is a book about the process of making shawls to help and comfort others in times of need, in times of celebration, or simply to mark the strength of the relationship between the knitter and the recipient. To me this book translated into words something I think most knitters instinctively know - knitted gifts provide comfort and warmth beyond what the materials alone of the garment would be able to provide. They carry with them the love and the warm wishes of the knitter. This book provides interesting suggestions for adding some sort of religious ritual to the process of knitting and gift-giving. Even if you're not into organized religion, you'll still be inspired. A great gift.
60 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spirituality and Knitting--Finally Nov. 28 2003
By cathy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is the first I have seen that really emphasizes the spiritual quality of knitting. As someone who has long appreciated knitting, and the giving and recieving of knitted goods,as a meditative, healing process, it is wonderful to see my sentiments expressed so eloquently. I have given several shawls to both friends and strangers in need of the warmth and caring they provide, and I can assure you that I have never seen a gift so appreciated. There is something about the love and time put into a shawl, combined with their sheer, tactile beauty, that embues them with an intangible strength. If you are not yet a knitter, this book is an excellent introduction, and the shawls are an perfect beginning project. If you are an advanced knitter, the template provided is a blank canvas for your creativity. This book is a beautiful celebration of the joys of creation and the power of caring.
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring !! March 2 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Absolutely lovely ! This book gave spiritual meaning to my knitting and so much added enjoyment. It provides basic instructions on how to make a prayer shawl using K3,P3 pattern and the rest of the book is a real joy to read. This book would be a wonderful gift to any knitter!!!
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is a gem. Nov. 2 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Whether you are new to the knitting ministry or are already knitting shawls, this book has much to offer. You will want to purchase more for friends and family and with Christmas approaching, what a wonderful gift idea.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book Aug. 2 2005
By Kathy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Knitting into the Mystery is a very thoughtful and though-provoking book. There are stories shared, prayers - and of course - directions for knitting and crocheting the shawls. More than just a how-to book, I enjoyed reading about the origins of this ministry and how others have come to be a part of it too. The authors have included insights from their Christian backgrounds as well as prayers from other faiths. This book has been helpful to me personally and also as I try to share this ministry with others in my church and community.
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