Rainbow scarves adorn the communion table at Second Congregational Church in Coventry.
Photos by Drew Page
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Knitters, crocheters and weavers interested in participating should send their scarves to:
The Scarf Project
by Drew Page
COVENTRY (10/01/2012) -- September is a bit warm for winter mufflers, but Pastor Maria Yocum and the pulpit of the Second Congregational Church of Coventry did not mind displaying their new rainbow scarves. The scarves were part of a new mission for the church's knitting group.
The rainbows that decorated the sanctuary in Coventry were made for the UCC Scarf Project, a call for 3,000 scarves made in bright rainbow colors to be distributed in time for General Synod 29 next July. Project creator the Rev. Dr. Marja Coons-Torn, Conference Minister for the Penn Central Conference, calls the scarves are "a symbol of commitment" to curb violence, especially bullying. According to the UCC website, the scarves will be given to Synod attendees who commit to opposing violence in some way.
"So when someone walks up to you at General Synod and asks you about your scarf, you offer to give it to them if they will agree to take an action against violence," Coons-Torn said in a UCC.org interview. "Then you can return to the display hall and pick out a new scarf."
Coventry's knitters, called Stitchin' Time, began the project this summer when they heard about the national movement. Knitter Lyn Goodwin says the group decided they would make four to six scarves to send to Synod, but they wanted the project to be a local mission as well. Goodwin has contacted staff at the local middle school to discuss involving the children in making scarves, as well as having discussions about bullying. She hopes the project can take on a similar process to the Synod plan, with students wearing the scarves to show their commitment to stem harassment.
|The Rev. Maria Yocum wears one of the rainbow scarves as a stole during worship.|
"It’s a work in progress," says Goodwin," and it's still evolving."
So far, Stitchin' Time's eight members have produced nearly a dozen of the colorful scarves. In addition, the congregation created two rainbow scarves using a tie-dye method during the Rally Day Service on September 9th when Pastor Yocum introduced the mission to the wider church membership. Yocum told the church that the Scarf Project fit part of the church's greater mission by reaching out to all people in the community. She described the Scarf mission as "a national idea brought down to a local focus."
Drew Page is Media Assistant for the Connecticut Conference, UCC.