Pine church group creates baby quilts for unwed mothers
The Grace Full Stitchers sow love with thread and needle.
They meet to make baby quilts for unwed, expectant mothers.
“We always have fun,” said artist Shari Finney of Middlesex, a member of the nimble-fingered Stitchers, who also worship together at Grace Reformed Presbyterian Church in Pine.
The Grace Full Stitchers meet from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. one Wednesday each month at the Treesdale home of Karen Schwab, a registered nurse and wife of U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab.
“Some of the ladies just like to embroider,” said Karen Schwab.
Others enjoy cutting, ironing and piecing together squares of colorful cotton.
A number of the women bring sewing machines.
All sit around Karen Schwab's dining room table, within steps from an ironing board set up in the nearby kitchen.
Everyone brings her own lunch.
The Grace Full Stitchers donate their infant coverlets to the Women's Choice Network, an organization that “empowers abortion-vulnerable women to choose life,” according to its mission statement.
“We love women. We love babies. We just want to support families,” said Amy Scheuring of Richland, executive director of the Women's Choice Network, which has offices in Monroeville, the North Side, Oakland and Pine.
All baby quilts made by the Grace Full Stitchers feature hand-sewn borders. Many also incorporate hand-embroidered squares.
Each quilt bears the Grace Full Stitchers' label with a couple lines from Psalm 130: “For you formed my inward parts. You covered me in my mother's womb.”
“It's just a really beautiful mom's gift,” Scheuring said. “Our clients — many times — are without a support system, and to have an heirloom, handmade quilt like this is a huge blessing to them that they really appreciate.
“They're really getting something that somebody put a lot of care and love into, and we hear that from the clients, that ‘This is something I'm going to save,'” Scheuring said.
The Grace Full Stitchers formed in 2009 after Scheuring spoke at Grace Reformed Presbyterian Church about the Women's Choice Network.
“We've had a lot of different women offer quilts, and everybody does an excellent job, but this group goes above and beyond,” Scheuring said about the Grace Full Stitchers.
Scheuring can't count the untold baby quilts made by the Grace Full Stitchers for unwed, expectant moms.
“They deserve to have something nice,” said Barbara Obaker, a member of the Grace Full Stitchers who taught French for 39 years at North Allegheny High School.
Other members of the Stitchers include Dr. Maribell McKelvy of Richland, a retired pediatrician; homemaker Mary Shear of Richland, a former secretary with 27 grandchildren; Judy Linhart of Dormont, a former member of Grace Reformed Presbyterian Church; and Patti Gomez of Cranberry, and her home-schooled daughter, Sarah Gomez.
“We do this because God has saved us, and he's given us different talents, and he brought us together at Grace (Reformed Presbyterian) Church, so we just want to share his love and truth,” said Shari Finney of Middlesex, Butler County, a former commercial artist.
“God created each of us,” Finney said. “No life is a mistake. He can bring good out of every situation.”
Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.