Sheriff’s patrol cars now have prayer shawls to help comfort residents in distress

Photos by Ginny Kropf: Orleans County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Marsceill stands by his patrol car with one of the prayer shawls which have been donated to the department by a group of Holley crocheters. Each deputy has a shawl in his car to comfort a child or anyone injured in an accident.

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 20 January 2019 at 10:40 am

HOLLEY – Orleans County sheriff’s deputies have a new weapon in their arsenal – prayer shawls.

Recently Sheriff Randy Bower was put in touch with a parishioner of St. Mary’s Church who told him of a prayer shawl ministry there.

Although they have no official name, the group of eight to 10 ladies who meet monthly to crochet make more than 1,000 items a year, said Buffie Edick, who founded the group about 10 years ago.

“We are always looking for a new project,” Edick said.

The ladies have provided a dozen crocheted prayer shawls so each deputy, as well as investigators, can have one in their car. The ladies have also committed to keeping the Sheriff’s Office supplied with shawls in the future.

“In case of inclement weather when we respond to an accident or incident, or someone needs comforting, we can provide a warm prayer shawl,” Bower said.

They also have stuffed animals to comfort a child.

These women from the Holley area have crocheted prayer shawls for Orleans County sheriff’s deputies to carry in their patrol cars to comfort anyone in distress when they answer a call. Seated are Marge Kruger, left, and Cathy Renko. At rear, from left, are Kat Tsoukatos, Marcia Crosier, Dianne Colucci and Buffie Edick. Members not pictured are Linda Rossi, Lynn Szozda and Jeanne Sheffer.

Before the shawls were delivered to the Sheriff’s Ofice, they were blessed at St. Mary’s Church.

Edick was taught to crochet when she was 7 by her grandmother. After back surgery about 10 years ago, Edick said she had time on her hands and wanted something to do.

The group now meets once a month at St. Mark’s in Kendall. They have donated items to more than 50 local organizations.

New members are always welcome, even if they can’t crochet. They are looking for someone to make prayer cards and deliver them.

One member now takes donated yarn and washes and re-spins it so that all finished items are clean and sanitary. Most of the women in the group buy their own yarn.

They donate a lot of items to migrant workers.

“Every month we have a new project,” Edick said. “We like to keep our donations local.”

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