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Inspired by ‘grandmother’s tiny angels’ UC woman undertakes labor of love

Inspired by ‘grandmother’s tiny angels’ UC woman undertakes labor of love
Inspired by ‘grandmother’s tiny angels’ UC woman undertakes labor of love | Inspired by ‘grandmother’s tiny angels’ UC woman undertakes labor of love

Mrs. Edmaiston said she decided to complete the sets of “grandmother’s tiny angels” items in memory of her own mother, “who is in heaven with several angels of her own.”
By GLENDA CAUDLE
Special Features Editor
Bonnie Edmaiston’s life has revolved around babies and small children almost since she was one herself.
So it is perfectly natural that when she began looking for a new project, her thoughts turned to little ones. The tiny ones turned out to be far smaller than she had anticipated, however.
Through a website called threads oflove.org, she discovered a ministry to families who had lost beloved infants through miscarriage or stillbirth or shortly after birth. The site also offers instruction and support for those interested in providing items for premature infants and very sick small babies.
A relatively short time after her discovery, Mrs. Edmaiston delivered her first batch of lovingly stitched tiny blankets, gowns and caps to Baptist Memorial Hospital-Union City’s obstetrical unit. The sets were individually and carefully packaged in zip-lock plastic bags and each package contained a specially-selected prayer poem for families who will not be taking a newborn home from the hospital with them as they had planned.
The packets are carefully color-coded as to the size baby they are fitted for — from infants at less than 14 weeks of gestation who are miscarried to those fashioned for full-term babies at 7-9 pounds who are stillbirthed or who die immediately after birth. The clear packets allow parents to choose a white, pink or blue ensemble and to view the careful stitching and decorative touches on each of the special items that will enfold the child they had planned for.
Mrs. Edmaiston said she decided to complete the sets of “grandmother’s tiny angels” items in memory of her own mother, “who is in heaven with several angels of her own.” It was her mother who taught Mrs. Edmaiston to create beautiful things through sewing.
Her sister, Pam Britt of Union City, has helped her with the labor of love these past few weeks.
The first set was delivered to the local hospital last week and another set will be going to Volunteer Community Hospital in Martin and to both White-Ranson Funeral Home and Edmaiston-Mosley Funeral Home in Union City. The latter packets will contain special baptismal gowns.
Some of the items are so tiny they must be completed using a serger, rather than a traditional sewing machine.
“When Bonnie approached us about this ministry, I thought how the loss of a child is one of the most devastating things people go through, but any ministry like this helps families deal with the pain in some way and so gives glory to God,” says BMH-UC chaplain and director of pastoral care the Rev. Mike Osment. “As a chaplain, I’m so happy to be able to provide this ministry to parents. It enhances the work the hospital is committed to doing.”
Mrs. Edmaiston says she thinks of herself as a vessel of the Lord and of her sewing machine as the instrument she has been gifted to use.
To learn more about the ministry, call her at 885-6752. Donations of fabric or lace or funds to purchase the materials may be sent to her at 321 South Fourth St. in Union City.
Included in each packet is one of two prayers, one of which follows:
“O Lord God, thank you for this precious child who now rests gently in Your loving arms. We know from Your Word that You do not forget us. We rejoice that this little angel is with the heavenly chorus and in the company of all those who praise You forever. Dearest Lord, we ask Your comfort for this child’s parents, grandparents and extended families who grieve the loss of this little one. Grant them Your strength and courage to trust in Your power to transform all sorrow and suffering into blessings and hope. Sustain these parents and their families with Your Holy Spirit. Supply their every need in abundance. Surround each one with an added measure of Your love. And give them knowledge of Your peace.
This we ask in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, Amen.”
Glenda Caudle may be contacted at glendacaudle @ucmessenger.com. Published in The Messenger 9.27.11

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