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Missionaries help Girls in Action make quilts as reminders to pray

BERNIE, Mo. (BP)–The quilt in 13-year-old Alicia Fralick’s bedroom is no ordinary quilt.

When she sees the bright colors of the different pieces of cloth that she stitched onto her quilt, she remembers to pray for missionaries.

“The one with the golden dragon is my favorite,” Fralick said, referring to the patch sent from Japan.

Alicia, along with several of her fellow GA (Girls in Action) members from First Baptist Church, Bernie, Mo., made quilts with cloth sent to them from 29 missionaries around the world. Now with the quilts completed, the girls are praying for missionaries and sharing their stories with others. GA leader Daphne Briles believes the quilts will have a lasting impact on the way the girls view mission work.

“This is something they can have for their whole lives,” said Briles, who also is director of Women on Mission for the church. “If someone doesn’t tell them about WMU and missions, it is going to die out.”

The project began last fall, shortly after the girls finished making a GA quilt for a young missionary girl in South Africa. Soon after the quilt was completed, the girls wanted quilts for themselves.

Briles came up with the idea of “prayer quilts.” She began to contact missionaries about sending material.

As each piece of cloth came in, the girls would talk about the missionaries who had sent the material. Each piece of cloth came with the name of the missionary and where he or she served.

“We would learn about the missionary, find out where the country they were from was on the map and talk about the area,” Briles said. “We would talk about the customs and food.”

Fabric was sent from missionaries in Japan, England, Africa, South America and elsewhere. “They were just thrilled to send them,” she said. Pieces of cloth from Japan, Poland and Russia were particularly popular among the GAs.

The group still receives prayer requests from about five missionaries almost every week.

After completing their quilts, the girls decided to use material left over to make a quilt for a church member who had been sick. Helen Cox, who was ill and confined to bed in a nursing home at the time, was glad to get it. “It was quite a conversation piece,” she said. “I would tell people what this was, and I got to witness to quite a few people. When people are in the hospital, they want comfort.”
(BP) photo posted in the BP Photo Library at www.sbcbaptistpress.org. Photo title: MISSIONS AND QUILTING.

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  • Shawn Hendricks