The Peace Quilters have been making quilts for distribution by Lutheran World Relief for many years. Around the year 2000, the group began meeting at the home of Peace Lutheran member Arlys Hopkins, who generously donated her basement for setting up the quilting rack, storing fabric, and assembling and sewing quilts. Every Thursday at 9:00 a.m., we gathered around Arlys’ dining table, always set with care and beauty, to enjoy fellowship and refreshments. Sometimes, it was hard to herd the cats downstairs to work, but we always descended to find the quilting frame set up, along with a large table for trimming and pinning, and sewing machines for finishing the hems and assembling new quilt tops.
Several years ago, our equipment was moved to the lower level of the church building, where we continue to assemble quilts and enjoy our time together.
Our quilts follow the guidelines set by Lutheran World Relief:
- 60” x 80” in size
- sturdy, washable fabrics (cotton, cotton blends, twill, polyester)
- no religious or patriotic symbols
The quilters stretch and pin a quilt bottom (often a flat bed sheet) on the frame. Polyester batting is laid on top of the sheet and cut to fit. Next, a quilt top that was previously assembled from various pieces of fabric, often squares sewn together, is pinned on top of the batting. A template is laid on top of the quilt to assist in tying the layers together with colorful crochet thread at regular intervals. Once tied, excess fabric or batting is trimmed off, and a hem is pinned around all four sides. The final step is to sew the hem with a zigzag stitch.
Each year, we celebrate Quilting Sunday, bless all of the year’s quilts, and pack them for distribution by Lutheran World Relief. In 2019, quilts made by the Peace Lutheran quilters went to Bosnia, Angola, and Peru.
Donations of fabric are always welcomed, and anyone interested in quilting is cordially invited to join the Peace Lutheran Quilters.