Hubbard United Methodist Church: Prayer Shawl Dedication

Prayer Shawls talk at HUMC for dedication of shawls  June 8th, 2014    

by Genell Poitras

Hubbard UMC Prayer shawls 2 This is the third year that we at this church on the Hubbard prairie (Park Rapids, Minnesota) are sending prayer shawls and knitted items half way around the world to a place we will never visit.  These expressions of loving comfort warm the hearts and the bodies of patients with tuberculosis and hepatitis as they heal in North Korean hospitals and rest homes.  Although the winter there is as cold as here the hospitals and rest homes are unheated.

Four years ago I had the privilege of accompanying a delegation to North Korea under the auspices of Christian Friends of Korea.  This organization delivers our knitted items to the patients in the rest homes and hospitals.  CFK began to work in North Korea during the severe famine in the mid 1990’s that took the lives of a million people.  After this crisis had abated, CFK began work with tuberculosis and hepatitis facilities.  CFK’s main purpose is to help these institutions become self-supporting.  They build greenhouses in order that vegetables can be available during the winter. CFK provides medicine, operating room equipment, nutritious food like canned meat, and tractors for transportation in mountainous areas.

While I was there we visited 16 rest homes and hospitals.  The rest homes were located in mountain valleys, far off main roads.  One clear, cool, April morning we drove for hours over rutted dirt roads, and forded a stream by a small village surrounded by fields ready for planting, to visit a rest home.  The home was nestled in the mountains far from any farm homes.  Patients lived in unheated rooms. genell

In the chilly office of the doctor who was the director we sat around a table laden with chestnuts, sweet potatoes, peanuts, persimmons and hot tea.  As we left I shook the hand of the doctor and told him I was impressed by the work he was doing.  He responded, “You must do something for others in order to find meaning in life.”  And, that is what we do as Christian when we reach out to others here in Hubbard, Park Rapids, our nation, and our world for what we do for others enriches and gives meaning to our lives and the lives of others.

Prayer for the Prayer Shawls

“Loving God, we send these shawls with our prayers that healing will come to the people whose shoulders these shawls will cover.  You have taught us to reach out with compassion to our brothers and sisters, many of whom we will never meet.  We give thanks for this opportunity to serve our distant neighbors.  In Jesus name we pray. Amen”

November 2012-C WJ 152


Contact Us

Christian Friends of Korea
P.O. Box 936
Black Mountain, NC 28711

Phone: 828-669-2355


Words of Truth

Then young women will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow.

— Bible, Jeremiah 31:13
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