Prayer Shawl Ministry Home Page

Celebrating 26 years in 2024!

"Shawls ... made for centuries universal and embracing,

symbolic of an inclusive, unconditionally loving, God.

They wrap, enfold, comfort, cover, give solace,

mother, hug, shelter and beautify.

Those who have received these shawls have been 

uplifted and affirmed, as if given wings to 

fly above their troubles..."

  Written in 1998 by: Janet Severi Bristow Copyright ©2023

Photo By: Shana Sureck - The Hartford Courant August 7, 2002

About the Shawls...

In 1998, Janet Severi Bristow and Victoria Galo, two graduates of the 1997 Women's Leadership Institute at The Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Connecticut gave birth to a ministry as a result of their experience in this program of applied Feminist Spirituality under the direction of Professor Miriam Therese Winter, MMS. Compassion and the love of knitting/crocheting have been combined into a prayerful ministry and spiritual practice which reaches out to those in need of comfort and solace, as well as in celebration and joy. Many blessings are prayed into every stitch.

Whether they are called Prayer Shawls, Comfort Shawls, Peace Shawls, or Mantles, etc., the shawl maker begins with prayers and blessings for the recipient. The intentions are continued throughout the creation of the shawl. Upon completion, a final blessing is offered before the shawl is sent on its way. Some recipients have continued the kindness by making a shawl and passing it onto someone in need. Thus, the blessing ripples from person-to-person, with both the giver and receiver feeling the unconditional embrace of a sheltering, mothering God!

(*The shawls can also be crocheted, quilted, woven or machine knitted as well!)

Some uses for the shawl...
Shawls can be used for: undergoing medical procedures; as a comfort after a loss or in times of stress; during bereavement; prayer or meditation; commitment or marriage ceremonies; birthing, nursing a baby; bridal shower or wedding gift; leading ritual; first menses or croning rites of passage; during an illness and recovery; ministering to others; graduation, birthday, anniversary, ordination, holiday gifts; or just socializing...there are endless possibilities!

To make a shawl personal, the giver or the recipient may want to adorn the shawl with beads, shells, feathers and charms.  A blessing or ritual maybe offered when the gift is presented.

Stories and Inspirations Prayers Shawl Instructions


"Symbolism" Meanings behind the shawl

Ministry Outreach

In The News The Prayer Shawl Companion Books Photo Gallery

Tips/Ideas/Other Patterns Downloadable Brochure

Original Prayer Shawl Instructions Knitted Prayer Shawl Patterns Crochet Prayer Shawl Patterns



Beginning a group

Email Us

     Prayer Shawl Journal

The Prayer Shawl Companion Books
Designs and Patterns to Embrace, Inspire, and Celebrate Life

 Written By: Janet Severi Bristow and Victoria A. Cole-Galo

[click on the photos for ordering options)

Journaling Page

(Click on the pen)

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It is important to us that the origins of this ministry be honored.  We have worked diligently to keep this

ministry a 'grass-roots' effort.  These shawls are meant to be given away unconditionally and NOT to be sold.


All materials on this site are copyright protected, duplicating, distributing, or

displaying any part of it, outside of personal use, is prohibited.

Due to an overwhelming response we are unable to take shawl requests.

Please visit our 'links' page to find a Shawl Ministry group in your area that may

be able to assist you.