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The Magnificent Journey

The Magnificent Journey

- By Jenny Wern

     My name is Jenny and I am number 10 of 11 children. One of my sisters, Peg (number 6), is taking a spiritual journey that has carried many people along with her that I think you’ll want to join.

The journey began soon after the Cincinnati Chapter of Project Linus started making blankets for children in crisis. Betty Jane (the eldest sibling, number 1) asked Peg and Mom to help make the blankets that are distributed through various hospitals, police departments, paramedics and county agencies throughout the country. Peg sewed blankets as her special “therapy” for about three years and encouraged others to help. She joined a quilting class along with several of my other sisters as a way to enhance her Linus blankets. She even encouraged our school teaching brother-in-law Jeff, (married to number 11, Barbara) and he got his elementary and high-school kids involved in making fleece tied blankets as a special community project. (Learn more about these kids on their website for their Warriors with Wings project at http://www.mariemontschools.org/hssports/ and follow the links.)

     During a daily meditation, Peg received a message from her angel Thomas that evolved into a special healing quilt. She “saw” an Angel standing in a flowing robe with huge wings in an unusual pose. It was like he was posing in a “back” view, as if he was looking back over his shoulder. She discussed this vision with Betty Jane and Jeff. Jeff is artistic and felt he could help in drawing the image and got to work right away. Peg and Betty Jane helped guide Jeff’s work and before you know it they all agreed, “this is it.” Betty Jane found some special fusible quilt backing with 2-inch squares printed on it, and helped Peg use it to create the pattern for the quilt from Jeff’s drawing. While the quilt was under construction, Peg’s angel Thomas explained during meditation that he was only posing for the quilt, that the image was really Archangel Michael. While the work in progress was lying out on the kitchen table, Mom stopped by to see how it was going. She left Peg a voice mail message saying she “saw the magnificent angel on the table,” and so it was named the “Magnificent.” It wasn’t until Peg began to sew the quilt together that she realized why the angel was posed the way he was… so he can wrap the person in his wings, in an angel hug.


The Magnificent

     Once Peg realized the Angel’s pose has meaning, a verse idea came during meditation from her guardian angel to go along with this quilt. The inspired verse idea, “The Healing Angel,” turned into three separate versions. One is more for healing, one for more general comfort. The third was specifically for a special blanket Peg made at the request of the Cincinnati Chapter of Linus Chairperson for a quilt to display in their Cincinnati Children’s Hospital display case.

 
     Its verse is called “Angel Wings and Heartstrings,” and Peg had assistance from Betty Jane in finalizing its exact wording. These verses are all perfect ways to send the message of love to the person wrapped in the wings of the angels to receive comfort and healing.


<<<<< Angel Wings and Heartstrings

 

The Healing Angel
- as inspired by Thomas-Summer 2004

Healing Angel from above
Wrap me in your wings of Love.
Softly whisper in my ear
Words of healing to calm my fears
(healing changed to comfort for second version)
Touch me with your healing breath
And in your arms I will find rest.


©
copyright 2004 by Peg Quallen

Angel Wings and Heartstrings
- by BJ and Peg

Sweetest Angel from above
Wrap me in your wings of love.
Softly whisper in my ear
Sounds of comfort calm my fear.
Touch me with your healing breath
Enclosed in you I will find rest.
Forever held to those most dear
By golden heartstrings, love and tears.

© copyright 2004 by Peg Quallen

 

     Peg determined that The Magnificent should be used in her healing room where she studies and practices Reike, a spiritual healing energy. Peg had been studying Reike with some lady friends for several years. She treats several members of the family regularly who report benefits from the treatment.

     Due to the complexity of making The Magnificent, Peg made an appliqué pattern to create similar healing quilts. She made one for Jeff, Betty Jane and each of her other Reike practicing friends. The quilts are all slightly different and have unique angelic names.


Glorious, The Magnificent, Melody

<<<  Thomas

 

for Jeff :
Thomas

for Betty Jane : 
Glorious

for Alison (Melody) & Lee :
Beautiful

 

Beautiful  >>>

Once the Angel quilts were distributed, the spiritual journey took off in a new direction. One of Peg’s best friends called to say she been diagnosed with breast cancer. Peg felt it was important to make her friend a “security” blanket (woobie), similar to the ones she has been making for years for the children helped by Project Linus.


A
ngel Above the Door

In Peg’s home she has many Angels. Actually, she has a collection of all kinds of adult angels in her dining room. But one particular angel in her home is above the door to her sewing/Reike healing room. This piece spoke to Peg and told Peg to use her as the pattern for the blanket for Peg’s friend. 

Peg made a shawl-style quilt for her friend and made the Angel Wings as the centerpiece of the quilt. When Betty Jane heard about it she suggested putting pockets on the inside to make it wrap like a shawl.

<<<<<<  Peg’s friend’s Angel Shawl

Peg described this event and the quilted outcome to our sister, Carolyn (number 7). Carolyn was intrigued by the project and described it to our sister Barbara, who has been very sick most of her adult life. Meanwhile, Peg agreed to make a quilt for another friend, but when Barbara saw this, she said, “That’s not what Carolyn described to me.” Peg called Carolyn and they discussed what Angel Wings really should look like.Then Barbara said "next time I'm in the hospital, I want you to bring me some wings." Peg said, "if you stay OUT of the hospital, I'll make you some wings now." Peg made a new pattern and created the first “Wings of Love” for Barbara.


Barbara models the First Wings of Love

The next time Barbara saw Peg for Barbara’s Reiki treatment, Peg brought her Wings.  Barbara has not been admitted into the hospital since!


Jenny Wrapped in Her Wings

     It just so happened that the girls in the family were all planning a trip out to Phoenix, Arizona, to collect Mom who had been staying with “The Arizona Girls” (Janet number 2, and Jenny number10) as a snowbird. Each year since our father suffered a debilitating stroke, the girls have taken Mom away for a weekend getaway. We used to do it every year the weekend after Labor Day, but over time and since Dad passed, we now just do it whenever it is a convenient excuse for a Ladies Weekend. Barbara wore her Wings of Love on the plane on the way out and when I saw Barbara’s Wings I immediately asked, “Where are my Wings?” Peg said she would make them the next day, as soon as I picked out my fabric.  The next day we went to the fabric store and I selected my fabric, a green and coral batik and some super soft white Avalyn for the lining. This Avalyn fabric is so soft you just want to snuggle right into it. Peg recreated the pattern and I soon had my very own Wings. They are beautiful and fit perfectly.

    Sister Sally (number 4) suggested Peg create another pattern for infants. Since there was fabric “left over” from making my Wings, Peg made a sample of the Baby Wings. Tamie (married to brother John, number 9) works at a hospital in the maternity ward. She tested the Wings by swaddling a stuffed animal in them and declared them “Perfect!”

     While the girls were having the Ladies Weekend in Phoenix, the men, Steve, (brother number 5), Janet’s husband Jim and my husband Bob were at my home in Lake Havasu City. My husband Bob was in the middle of his radiation and chemo treatments for the throat cancer he was diagnosed with a few months earlier. When the weekend was over, I returned to Lake Havasu with my Wings of Love. I immediately shared them with Bob.

     A month later, we participated in the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Event in Lake Havasu City. I wore my Wings to the event. The radiation nurses saw me wearing them and asked to try them on. Apparently they were impressed because they told the receptionist at the radiation facility, and she asked to see them. I took them with us to Bob’s second to last treatment. While I was demonstrating the Wings, a volunteer from the hospital Women’s Auxiliary walked in. She thought they would be great for the Chemo patients, since it is always so cold in the treatment room. She asked if I would give her a pattern.  This is where the spiritual journey and the flight of the Wings of Love really took off. I sent an email to Peg asking for a pattern. This set into motion events that touched many people and brought them along on this spiritual journey. Peg sent me a pattern and then started getting advice from lawyers, friends and family. She created a nonprofit organization, the International Association of Touchers, opened a bank account for the organization, and found a friend of the family who began work on the website.

     The International Association of Touchers was originally loosely formed by the ladies who practice and study Reiki with Peg as just a group of like-minded individuals. These were the same ladies for whom Peg made the special angel healing quilts. Peg was given the name of the association in a dream that she interpreted to mean that all the things she was doing to “touch” other people’s lives were worthy and should be continued. Peg shared her dream with this group and they lightheartedly called themselves the “touchers,” as a play on words for the hands-on healing they do with Reiki. Because the Wings are a means of touching others, Peg decided to create the nonprofit using the name from her dream – the International Association of Touchers.

     When the Wings of Love were created, Peg discussed with an attorney friend the best way to protect the idea and make sure that they would never be made for profit. The Wings are to be made out of love, sewing the love into every stitch, and passed from one person to another at no charge. The love energy is transformed into a tangible expression that can be felt and experienced over and over again. Love, it’s a very powerful energy. Each set of wings must come with the verse. Barbara, Tamie and Carolyn have been hand stamping small cards to attach by ribbon to the Wings. Tamie also makes Thank You note cards in the shape of The Wings of Love we use for our business supporters when we send their receipt for contributions.

     At a monthly meeting of the Ohio Valley Quilt Guild the speaker for the month explained how to create and market your own patterns and recommended a book that was very helpful to the process. It was a fortunate coincidence that Betty Jane and Peg decided to attend the meeting at the last minute, not even knowing who or what the topic for the evening was going to be.  A friend of brother Dick (number 8) volunteered to create the website and the means for tracking the Wings of Love began. Peg continues to make Wings for Mercy Hospital Anderson and Fairfield with Tamie as the distributor. The Heartland Hospice volunteers and a local church group have also been provided patterns and are distributing wings.

     I gave a copy of the pattern Peg sent me to the Lake Havasu City Hospital Auxiliary Craft Group first and explained my goal. My goal is to create enough Wings of Love for every cancer survivor at next year’s American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Event in Lake Havasu City to walk away with something they can find comfort in whenever they feel the need. I started soliciting local businesses to help me with my personal goal of 100 Wings made by April 2007. I found 13 women to help me sew before I got the first business donation of cash for material. I then started collecting non-cash donations as well and organized a raffle to raise cash funds from these non-cash donations.  I asked a local silkscreen company to print the verse on donated materials and I feel I am on track for my goal to be reached. You can read my journal on our website to learn more about how I reach my goal.

I invite everyone to participate in this Magnificent Journey of love. This is not just Peg’s journey. She has made it possible for many to benefit from this outpouring of something we all have the potential to share, “pure love.” Share the Love and Pass it on!

     How can you join the journey? Go to the website www.followthewingsoflove.com and read more about the Wings of Love and other people’s stories. Register on the website. Request a pattern. Start a Wings of Love project in your community. Sew them, create verse tags for them, distribute them, talk about them, send them to your friends and loved ones, document your stories about the Wings on the website, help the charitable organizations in your community distribute them to those in need of love, comfort and healing from whatever crisis confronts them.

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