‘Helper pillows’ special outreach

SPECIAL BLESSING — Palm Sunday services at Follansbee United Methodist Church included prayers said over these “helper pillows” made by the church’s UMW group for residents of Brightwood Nursing Home. With Pastor Penny Calmbambacher, right, are UMW representatives, from left, project organizer Darlene Boniey, Verna Tarr, Bonnie James, Linda Snyder, Linda Hipkiss, Julie Olszewski and Janet Formis. -- Contributed

FOLLANSBEE — The Palm Sunday service at Follansbee United Methodist Church involved a special blessing for a special project.

More than 100 “helper pillows” made by the Follansbee United Methodist Women were prayed over at the April 14 service by church Pastor Penny Calmbambacher before they were to be presented to residents of a local nursing facility.

“The Follansbee United Methodist Women have taken on this project as a local mission outreach project,” explained Darlene Boniey, who launched the project and oversaw it.

“We are making what we call ‘helper pillows’ for all of the residents at Brightwood Nursing Home,” she said. “The idea for this project came from the overload of beautiful material that was donated to our craft group at our church. Not knowing what to do with this nice material, our first thought was to make pillows,” Boniey continued.

“We have in the past collected items for other groups and felt that the residents in nursing homes get overlooked. A pillow can be a great ‘help’ if you need to prop up your arm or a leg, and they can relieve neck and back pain. A pillow also is good to hug and squeeze,” she said.

That factored together to propel the project for 114 pillows.

“The Follansbee United Methodist women have been working on these pillows for about five weeks and have met several times to complete them for the Palm Sunday service,” Boniey said. The pillows were displayed on the altar for Palm Sunday to be prayed over before delivery to the nursing home.

Aside from Boniey, other members who participated were President Christina Williams, Linda Hipkiss, Barb Williams, Megan Moore, Verna Tarr, Linda Snyder, Bonnie James, Julie Olszewski and Janet Formis. A friend of the church, Shelia Adams, also helped.