A Heartfelt Mahalo
Posted on Wednesday, August 15, 2012

NHCH would like to extend a heartfelt MAHALO to the Kamuela Hongwanji for sewing and donating 116 prayer blankets to NHCH’s Prayer Blanket Ministry.  Any patient that requests one receives a prayer blanket that is sewed with heart-centered prayers and positive intentions.  

NHCH offers several different forms of Holistic Services to patients, one of which is the Prayer Blanket Ministry.  These colorful lap blankets are sewn by the community, blessed by churches around the Big Island and given to our patients.  Blankets are offered to patients going into surgery, admitted to the Intensive Care Unit or Med Surg, or receiving chemotherapy as Oncology patients.   

The Kamuela Hongwanji not only sewed 116 prayer blankets, but also held a special blessing ceremony which was attended by those who sewed the quilts as well as four hospital representatives:   Arielle Faith Michael, Director of Holistic Care Services, Jennifer Rabalais, Infection Control Coordinator, Cora Buno, Director of Hospitality Services and Laurie Edmondson, Event Coordinator.   “A large ancient singing bowl was sounded, fragrant incense permeated the air and candles surrounded with freshly cut flowers set the tone for this sacred ceremony,” shared Arielle Faith Michael, Director of Holistic Care Services.  “We received beautiful leis and were asked to speak about the Prayer Blanket Ministry at NHCH. We shared the history of the prayer blankets and our patients’ reactions to receiving such a heart filled gift.”

“These blankets bring so much hope, love and peace to those who receive one,” continues Michael. “When we tell patients that community members have sewn the blankets with prayerful intent, churches blessed them AND they get to keep them, they are so overwhelmed with emotion and gratitude.  It is hard to put into words what these blankets mean to our patients,” said Michael.
NHCH’s Holistic Council would like to extend a heartfelt mahalo to the Kamuela Hongwanji for their recent prayer blanket donation, as well as the Waimea Senior Citizens Club, the Ka'ahumanu Society, Annunciation Catholic Church, Amy Wakayama and Kathy Lukens for faithfully sewing prayer blankets for our hospital. “From your hearts and with your hands, you touch many lives, and we are humbly grateful and honored,” says Michael.  
For more information about donating prayer blankets, blanket material or monetary donations towards NHCH’s Prayer Blanket Ministry, please contact Arielle-Leah Michael, Director of Holistic Services, at Arielle.Michael@NHCH.com or by calling 881.4416.