Sunday, November 20, 2011

The 23rd Psalm & Camp Fowler


The Dove of Peace, seen above, adorns a stole which three quilting ladies from our church made for our pastor this summer. When asked to share some information about the stole, she wrote the following:

The 23rd Psalm Stole
made by Bobbie N., Lee P. and Lynn Makrin
for Jan Hoffman
for summer camp, Camp Fowler, 2011
Preparation for leading a week at camp, planning for teaching 90 youngsters in Grades 3-12, takes months of work.  About 4-5 weeks before our assigned week, Pastor Jan came up with the idea for a stole to wear each day.  But she didn’t have a stole portraying the 23rd Psalm.  So she asked her quilting friends if they could make a stole for Camp Fowler.  They jumped at the chance and quickly Lee put out a wide variety of beautiful fabrics, many deep green fabrics representing the beloved Adirondack forest, clear blues for sky and deep mountain lake.  Bobbie envisioned embroidery and appliqué.  Lynn asked questions, arranged and rearranged cloth pieces.

A glorious stole was created and ready for Pastor Jan on Sunday, July 31, 2011 for the church’s week of volunteering at camp. 
The 23rd Psalm stole was worn each morning for Morning Watch, outdoor devotions before breakfast.  Pastor Jan taught a part of the 23rd Psalm each morning, using the stole, helping the campers memorize the Psalm.  The stole is a rich visual which helped us learn.
The stole hung in the chapel during the day.  Pastor Jan would wear it at evening chapel or display it prominently on the communion table.

The theme for the summer was “Bring Forth the Kingdom.”  A week of summer camp at Fowler helps us practice Kingdom living.  The 23rd Psalm teaches us what the Kingdom might look like.  Signs throughout the camp pointed to the Green Pastures or Meadows, where we play games; the Still Waters where we swim; the Dangerous Places where we aren’t supposed to climb on the rocks on the shore.
The 23rd Psalm is regularly recited at funerals and during Sunday morning liturgy.  Pastor Jan wears the stole at her discretion.

Thank you for those lovely words, Pastor Jan.

Now to the quilting. As you recite the Psalm (seen below if you've forgotten it) you can look at the stole from the left side (Pastor's right) and "read" it down beginning with "The Lord is my shepherd" and then "read" up right side beginning with "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death" in the dark black section and ending at the top  "and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever."  The techniques used were mainly fusible applique with free-motion quilting on top.

Bobbie's notes on stole and embroidery designs are here:
 "First the photo, which is of the chapel at Camp Fowler, which Lee had in her camera. We copied it to my computer. From there I reduced the size to fit the place on the stole. I then printed it onto special fabric made for photo copying. There was backing on the fabric & I left it on to give it more body before I appliqued it in place with a blind stitch on my machine & invisible thread.

The other designs were bought from various sites. Some, like the chalice & loaf , and the feet were excellent. Others were just OK so I digitized them again on my machine.
I have a Bernina 730 machine and use the version 6 Bernina software."

Finally, just like the experience of being at camp as a child with your friends for one very special week within the middle of the summer, this collaboration was similar. We were working together for a specific goal with a definite deadline. It was very fun, easy and a learning experience for me.

I hope the "Quilting Ladies" at church will have the chance to work together again!
Much gratitude goes out to Pastor Jan for the request, and to Bobbie and Lee for
working with me and around my children!

Psalm 23
The LORD Is My Shepherd
A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
he leadeth me beside the still waters. Rev. 7.17
3 He restoreth my soul:
he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:
thou anointest my head with oil;
my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Published by The American Bible Society
The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2000.


  1. The stole is beautiful! Wonderful work by all!

  2. Thanks, Debb. If you click on the Camp Fowler link you can see photos of the camp and hear their "Christmas" CD. There is more inspiration for future quilting there as well.

  3. it was beautiful even though i like old school quilting... bill foos