Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
  • entries
  • comments
  • views

About this blog

These will be past and Present Articles that we hope still inspires etc..

Entries in this blog


April 2009 Article

Spread The Word Challenge

Hello everyone! I have a different kind of challenge for everyone this quarter. And hopefully some of you will be willing to help Heavenly Angels In Need....Spread The Word. As most of you know our needs are growing, and in these tough economic times it can be a bit harder for volunteers to ship items off. While I know that despite all that is going on, we are all still plugging away and doing what we can....and that is fantastic! So that is why Im proposing this new "challenge"....its something that any volunteer of HAIN can do and for minimal cost (just the cost of printing and possibly postage) If you want to give us a hand continue reading for more information on what you can do to help.


Place Brochures, Flyers, Etc In Your Community: In the public area of our forum there are different advertising materials available for you to download and print. Why not print a few flyers and place them in your local grocery stores, malls, or anywhere else that you can think of that would be ok with a flyer being placed in their business. Or print some brochures and stop around some places in your area, asking if you may leave some with them...and you can always send some to hospitals that you donate to. You don't even have to make a special trip to do this, just grab a few as you head out the door to run your errands.

Use A Heavenly Angels In Need Banner: If you have a website or blog we have banners that are available as well that you are welcome to use to help spread the word about HAIN and what we do. And pass the info on to your friends as well asking if they would help by displaying one of our banners.

Use Our Media Kit: Also located on our public forum is a media kit that you are welcome to download. If you know of someone, church groups, craft groups, etc that might be interested in joining, but may want more information on what we do, you can give them this kit. It has lots of helpful information and discusses the wide variety of skills that we could use.

Newspaper Advertising: You could try contacting your local newspaper or maybe your city has a free one that goes out. (Mine does) and you could contact them about placing a small ad. Some will give a discount or will do it at no cost for charities.

Donation Box: You could ask your church if it would be ok for a donation box to be set up to collect yarn, fabric, toys, or finished projects.

Have a HAIN Baby Shower: Who doesnt love to buy baby things. (I know I sure do) You could host a baby shower for HAIN, invite your family and friends and ask each of them to bring at least one item to benefit babies in need. Even if its a smaller party, even 5 items would be greatly appreciated. You could even do this at work if you are permitted to, see if any co-workers would be interested in donating an item or two.

Work Parties: You could host a work party.....with your family, friends, or co-workers. A bunch of you can get together and work on items for HAIN. You could do it once, or host them as often as you would like. You could even contact schools in your area to see if any of the students have volunteer hours to complete and you could work with the students on making memory boxes for HAIN, and some church groups may have an interest in this as well.

As our needs grow, we are looking to expand our volunteer base. With the current state of the economy it would be much easier if we had enough volunteers in each area to give locally...many of us could save on shipping costs as we help fill the needs for these precious babies and their families. So how about it? Every little bit helps and you never know where you might spark an interest in our mission


Jan 2009 Article

“How could you do that?” “That’s morbid.” “How weird that is.”

Sound familiar? These are a few of the comments I’ve gotten from friends, family, acquaintances, and even strangers when they find out that I make burial garments for Heavenly Angels in Need. People, even some who have lost babies, find it repulsive, disturbing, and frankly, a waste of time.

So how does someone who never lost a baby end up making burial garments? And what do you say when faced with these comments?

A little over four years ago, I lived atop a quiet mountain in the Blue Ridge and was very bored. Up North, my mother was making hats and scarves for the homeless. I wanted to help, but couldn’t knit or crochet, never mind sew, so I ordered a huge amount of yarn and donated that instead. My mom had given me some old yarn and a how-to crochet book on one of my visits so I took it out and taught myself to crochet. My daughter had taken a knitting class at the library and she taught me the knit stitch. I bought a book and taught myself the rest. My first project was a girls’ hat, scarf, and mitten set, which I mailed off to donate. After making mostly hats and scarves, I joined an online charity helping babies. My first project was a newborn blanket. Hats soon followed, then booties, dresses, and sweaters. But never a burial garment. I knew the need for these was great, but every time I sat down to make one, I ended up crying—sometimes just while looking at the patterns online. Then, I found out I was pregnant and, being superstitious, certainly wasn’t going to make any burial garments!

Sometime last spring I decided to try again. The thought of beloved babies going without such a basic need was on my mind. Unlike previous attempts, this time I had a real peace about it. I made a gown-bonnet-booties-blanket set, and decorated it with silk ribbon and flowers and a cross charm. The first time is the hardest, so they say. Right away I made another set. I felt different when I worked on these projects – like I knew I was doing what God had given me to do, and I was very aware of His grace.

I found HAIN last summer while searching for patterns and looking for a more local charity to send my donations to. It couldn’t have been a more perfect find. If you are active on the forums then you know I am too, and you know I am pretty passionate about HAIN! I love my HAIN family more than you all could know.

So, how do I answer those comments? At first, I was a bit offended and put off. I would try explaining how these families had nothing and it was a shame – no, a sin really – to let the smallest of God’s angels be buried in an old towel or an old blanket or nothing at all! And I had to realize that some people just don’t care. Others, though they may not be crafters themselves, can truly appreciate the HAIN mission once you put it to them that way. I’ve learned to “read” their reaction to know whether to continue the explanation or just let it go. Not everyone can do what we do for the babies. It’s a high calling. And I’m proud to be a part of HAIN alongside other people who have answered the same call.


From HAIN Newsletter April 2006

Anna in Utah packing bags! (Picture was here)

For the past couple of years I’ve received many requests for contributions from St. Lab re Indian School in Ashland, Montana. Sometimes I have sent them some money, but one day last fall I received another mailing from them when I really didn’t have extra money to send to them. Then I got another inspiration: Having recently sent some items to Sheri Null for the Special Kids’ Bags, it occurred to me that maybe the school could use some of those bags also. I went to their website and found a place to click to send an e-mail, and the next day I heard from Teresa Wilson who said they would be happy to receive some of our kids’ bags. I asked for assistance from other HAIN members and received a few boxes of items to use in the kids’ bags and purchased many items myself.

Because the school is several hundred miles from me in Utah, I have not been able to make a personal delivery yet, so the bags were mailed one age group at a time, 4-6 bags in each box depending on how much room I had. The first box to be sent contained newborn bags, then I sent some bags for toddlers and preschoolers, followed by bags for preteen children and then teens. Each shipment has been acknowledged by a nice thank-you letter from the program director.

Many of the items for the Special Kids’ bags have come from on line and “brick & mortar” dollar stores. My biggest problem supply-wise has been pajamas – being an Avon representative, I started by searching recent brochures for PJ’s but the ones in the “core brochure” are too expensive to buy a bunch at a time, and the ones in their Outlet clearance booklet and far and few between and almost never anything for boys. Family Dollar stores carry pajamas for babies and preschoolers for less than $5.00, but I have yet to find any for older children. I recently discovered the “clearance” section of some on line stores such as Target and Disney for pajamas, which is a big help, but again, they are limited on available sizes.

Boxes of bags getting ready to go.

Currently my biggest needs are pajamas for children sizes 6-14, small toys, trial-sized diaper packages, and travel-size toiletries such as baby shampoo and lotion. Any other items that can be used for kids are also welcome!

Glen, official Hain toy tester!


Article from HAIN Newsletter April 2006 (All pictures missing from this online version)

The Spirit of Christmas…….

By Pauline Hale

Have you watched, “The Polar Express?”

The focus was on believing and if you did you could hear the sound of the bell as it rang.

The Spirit of Christmas is something worth believing. You feel it, if you enjoy the holiday, when you give.

The world glorifies the receiving and capitalizes on the greed, but, truly the Spirit of giving is of the real Spirit behind it all. The Holy Spirit stirs in our hearts when we do what is a natural progression of true faith in Jesus Christ.

When you realize that only by grace

You were saved, and that not of yourself, but Jesus Christ, you fall madly in love with the Lord. You act like a new bride in Christ would. You give, give, and give always beyond measure to make our Husband happy. We do this by giving of ourselves which brings pure joy. It sends a tingle of pleasure in our hearts which sets off the sound of tingling in our bell.

The truly sad thing is that most people really never get it because they don’t believe and are captured by the greed of this world. They don’t give, they lay up store houses (storage sheds) of treasures. They can’t fit the stuff n their homes because they are over running. They get paranoid that someone may want or steal it. They try to hoard it beyond death.

The Lord says, “He that loves this life will lose it and he that hates this life will have eternal life.”

The new lie in the pulpits of America is what I call the Golden Calf or Prosperity message. They say, “Whatever you do, don’t have the “Poverty Mentality!” This is usually the message preached right before huge building fundraisers and then it goes on and on because then the remodeling or decorating begins. It never stops once it starts.

Can you imagine what they would have claimed Jesus Christ was when he was born in a manger, worked as a Carpenter, had no home? From all I read He was a Street Person with charisma. Wow, what a picture.

He wasn’t caught up in the things of this world. He preached the opposite. Satan tried to tempt Him. He just spoke the Word and satans suggestions were non-existent.

When you give, as Christ did, with His heart, you are a true believer in the Spirit of Christmas. This is why I believe the people that volunteer feel the desire to give. They feel the Spirit through out the year when most people have discarded it until next Christmas.

The volunteers see need, the Spirit says give and they are obedient, they work and give.

Call it poverty mentality or a real Christ like act but know it is because you believe in your heart and the Holy Spirit makes the jingle in your bell real. Do you feel it or do you give with no jingle sound?

Children all over the world are in need of the Spirit of Christmas touching their lives through you. Can you say, no, to this child or any other in need? Make it Christmas all year round to them.

Heavenly Angels in Need Children’s Division is looking forward to making jingle bell’s ring across the nation and around the world as we serve with the humble heart of Jesus Christ.

May you always prosper with the prosperity of a Christian, in heaven, and not worry about a poverty mentality. Jesus left no physical treasures behind, only the Word which He spoke.

Say yes to another child in a crisis and watch Jesus move Heaven and Earth to bless you.


Article from April 2007


We all know about the benefits of helping others and what a Blessing it can be to those receiving those Blessings.

I am here to tell you my story, about how helping others also helped my health.

I had to have surgery on my shoulder on November 9th. I was told this was a very painful

Surgery and it would take me 6 months of recovery time. For 6 weeks I could not move

my arm away from my body and then I would have to go to rehab for the remainder of that 6 months. This just did not set right with me, 6 months!, But Dr., when can I crochet? You see I am a member of” Heavenly Angels In Need” and we crochet for God’ s littlest angels. They need us now! So please tell me, “ when can I crochet?’ My Dr. said,”as long as you do not move your arm away from your body you can crochet 5 days after your surgery. So I came home and set up everything I would need to crochet for Hain”s babies close to where I would be sitting so I could mind my Dr. and be able to use my arm again.

I had my surgery and they were right ,it was painful!! As I sat praying for the strength to overcome the pain, I saw my crochet on the side of my chair. I remembered the pain I saw in my mother’s eyes when she came home from the hospital without my baby brother,. Micheal Ugene . He only lived 24 hours. His lungs collapsed and back then they couldn’t do anything. And then I started thinking about the other mother’s pain that would never go away. I picked up my crochet , the first stitches were kind of sloppy, but I kept trying anyway. I don’t think I have ever crocheted so slow in my life. But my own pain did not seem so bad.

The next week I started rehab, still with my arm in a sling and close to my body. My husband had to drive me to rehab 3 times a week. But I had my crochet with me!! I became known as the impatient patient. They would take my crochet away from me when they would hook me up to the machine that would massage my muscles in my arm. As my rehab continued, my blanket grew. Every time I went to rehab they would want to see my blanket and see how much I had done on it. I finished my rehab in 3 months and that blanket has come to be a round ripple the size for a newborn.

My name is Karen Walls and I am a proud member of HEAVENLY ANGELS IN NEED. Happy Crocheting!!! And God Bless You!!!


April 2007 Article

Helping the Poor and Homeless

by Randy Alcorn (Originally published in Discipleship Journal)

A stubble-faced, leather-skinned vagrant approaches me and asks, "Can you spare some change?" It's nothing new, but the last few years the faces have been getting younger, the requests more frequent and my responses less certain. A popular sign reads, "Will work for food." Sometimes it's true. Sometimes it isn't. (Unless I have a job to offer, how can I know?)

As a pastor for fourteen years, I was sometimes called on to deal with requests for money. Knowing that churches have benevolence funds, needy people dropped by asking for gas money, food money, or bus money. Some of them slept in their cars. Some even had children. It was my job to try to discern if the need was legitimate, and if so, the best way to help. As director of a parachurch ministry committed to assisting those who feed the poor, I have to exercise the same kind of discernment.

Definitions and therefore estimates of the homeless vary widely from source to source. (Does homeless include those who have no home of their own, but live with others? Does it include those who stay in government provided apartments and never face sleeping on the streets?) It appears that between 300,000 and 500,000 Americans may be homeless on any given night. Most of these end up in shelters, and a good portion of those who don't are on the streets by choice. (According to Newsweek, New York City alone has 90,000 homeless, and 30,000 of these have AIDS or are HIV positive.) Most of these are adult men, but there are increasing numbers of women and children, and even whole families.

Demographic breakdowns of the homeless also vary widely from source to source. The following is an average of statistics found in several different sources, and is therefore only roughly accurate. It appears that about 15% of homelessness is due to job loss and lack of low-income housing. About 35% is due to mental illness, which is usually accompanied by marginal job skills. About 50% of the homeless are physically and mentally able, with job skills ranging from minimal to optimal, but choose not to work.

Many in the latter group are alcoholics or drug-addicts. They take advantage of public shelters and soup kitchens to save money for their addictions. Frequently they are the most cunning and aggressive panhandlers, while the willing-to-work are often too ashamed to ask for money, and not "good at it" when they do. The 15% whose adverse circumstances have put them on the streets are the subject of most of the media stories on "street people." The sentiments this generates prompt further indiscriminate social services that often end up going to the wrong people, thus fueling the growing public cynicism about the poor that results in "throwing the baby out with the bathwater" (failing to help the truly poor because of resentment toward those who abuse the system).

When it comes to the poor and homeless, I see three primary questions. The morality question-"What is our responsibility to the poor?" The wisdom question-"how do we discern who the poor are and what they really need?" The practicality question-"what exactly should we do to help the poor?"

What is Our Responsibility to the Poor?

In his essay on self-reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, "Do not tell me, as a good man did today, of my obligation to put all poor men in good situations. Are they my poor?"

Biblically, Emerson's question can be approached two ways. First, are the non-poor to blame for the poor being poor? Karl Marx claimed that if anyone has more than someone else, he must have gotten it at the other's expense. Scripture, however, tells us God "gives you the ability to produce wealth" (Deut. 8:18). There is not a set amount of wealth that is constantly redistributed. One person can generate wealth without taking it from another.

Of course, some have cheated and exploited others, contributing to their poverty-"The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you" (James 5:4). If we have done this we must repent and make restitution. Zaccheus determined to pay back four times over those whom he had cheated (Luke 19:8).

But contrary to Emerson's sentiments, even if I am not to blame for the poor being poor, Scripture tells me I am still responsible to help them. The Good Samaritan was not responsible for the plight of the man lying beside the road. After all, he had not robbed and brutalized him. Nonetheless, he was responsible to love his neighbor as himself. He did this not simply by refraining from hurting him, but by actively helping him. He generously used his time, energy and money to care for him. Jesus instructed us to do the same (Luke 10:30-37).

God says, "I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land" (Deut. 15:10, 11). He promises special reward for helping the poor (Prov. 19:17; 22:9; 28:27). The Old Testament prophets boldly spoke forth God's commands to care for the poor (Isa. 58:7-11). Jesus came to preach the good news to the poor and needy (Luke 4:18-19). Though he himself had little, Christ made a regular practice of giving to the poor (John 13:29). He also repeatedly commanded care for the poor, promising eternal reward for those who do so (Luke 14:12­14). Special offerings to help the poor were commonplace in the early church (Acts 11:27-30; 24:17; Gal. 2:10).

Caring for the poor is a litmus test of whether our faith is biblical and genuine (James 1:27; 2:14­16; 1 John 3:16­19). Our Lord takes personally how we treat the poor-"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat . . . In that you did it for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me" (Matt. 25:34-35).

How Do We Decide Who the Poor Are and What They Need?

We are often told by government and religious agencies alike that we should help "the poor" by doing this or that. But it is a fundamental error to lump together all of the "poor," as if they were a monolithic group. Both Scripture and experience teach us that not all people are poor for the same reasons, and therefore not all can ultimately be helped by the same means.

I can think of at least fifteen reasons people may be poor: insufficient natural resources, adverse climate, lack of knowledge or skill, lack of needed technology or equipment, natural disaster (e.g. earthquake or flood), personal catastrophe (e.g. destruction of home or fields), poor health or physical handicap, mental handicap, exploitation and oppression by others, inability to find work, substance addiction, personal laziness, wasteful self-indulgence, personal choice to identify with and serve the poor (e.g. Mother Teresa), and religion or world view. (An example of the latter is the Hindu concept of karma which discourages improving one's circumstances and results in people starving while one of their major God-given food sources, cattle, consumes another, grain.)

Cures must be tailor-made to the cause of an illness. One does not take chemotherapy to cure a cold, nor insulin to treat asthma. It is as ludicrous to use one stock formula to "help the poor" as it is to give all sick people the same treatment for every disease and expect it to heal them.

If a person is poor because his home has been destroyed by earthquake or flood, the solution may be to give him the money, materials and assistance to help him rebuild his home and reestablish his business. If he's poor due to exploitation or oppression or injustice, we can offer immediate help while laboring for long-term legal, social, and economic reforms. When poverty is due to adverse climate, the poor need not just short-term relief, but long-term development that will give them the resources to prevent future poverty and hunger. (Some relief organizations are short-sighted, responding to present emergencies-as they should-but doing little to prevent future emergencies.)

If a person is homeless due to a mental handicap, we should seek to provide love, friendship and housing, find proper treatment and training in job skills. (Becoming a contributing member of society is often the best treatment for mental illness.) For those with addictions who want help, we can link them with rehabilitation and recovery groups. Again, giving short-term help without offering long-term solutions is counterproductive.

A person may be poor because of waste and self-indulgence-"He who loves pleasure will become poor" (Prov. 21:17). A man may make a decent income but waste it on drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, expensive convenience foods, costly recreation, or gambling (including lotteries).

Many people manage to meet their family's needs on very low incomes. Others make several times as much money, but are always "poor," always in a financial crisis. This is not because their means are too little, but because they are living above their means. Trying to solve such a situation by throwing money at it is like trying to put out a fire by dousing it with gasoline.

When I was a pastor, we called a government agency to get the names of needy people. We drove to their homes with sacks of food, only to find people surrounded by conveniences that some of us contributing the food couldn't afford or justify. I've seen people who perpetually "have no money" to buy groceries for their family, but have a boat, car or recreational vehicle worth $20,000 parked in their driveway! Such people need to be held accountable to liquidate their assets and feed their families, then learn to reorder their priorities and live within their means.

Some people are poor due to laziness. God's Word says that the result of laziness will be poverty (Prov. 24:30-34). "Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth" (Prov. 10:4). "Laziness brings on deep sleep, and the shiftless man goes hungry" (Prov. 19:15). "A sluggard does not plow in season; so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing" (Prov. 20:4). "The fool folds his hands and ruins himself" (Eccles. 4:5).

Every act of provision to a lazy person legitimizes and reinforces his laziness. It removes his incentives to be responsible for himself, and makes him more dependent on others. Paul commanded the Thessalonian church to stop taking care of the lazy and reminded them of this strict rule-"if a man will not work, he shall not eat" (2 Thess. 3:10). If we take this verse literally, and I do, it means it's a sin to feed the lazy. The point is not to let people starve-the point is that faced with hunger they will be motivated to work and support themselves as God intends. "A worker's appetite works for him, for his anger urges him on" (Prov. 16:26).

The lazy and self-indulgent do not need financial support, they need incentives to no longer be lazy and self-indulgent. "Laziness brings on deep sleep, and the shiftless man goes hungry" (Prov. 19:15). As God-created nerve endings send the painful but life-saving message "take your hand out of the fire," so hunger sends the life-saving message to the lazy person, "Stop being lazy and go to work." That is, unless we circumvent God's system by feeding the lazy. It is a serious error to invalidate the God-ordained mechanism that says "What you sow you will reap" (Gal. 6:7). By all means we must care for those whose circumstances and disabilities leave them poor. But any system-whether secular or religious-that feeds the able-bodied lazy is a counterproductive system. It does them and the rest of society a disservice. We become enablers and accomplices in the violation of God's principles. The lazy man is poor by choice. We must do nothing to encourage that choice.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development counted 1900 homeless shelters in 1984. By 1988, there were 5400. Why? Because, some experts are now saying, the supply created a demand. U.S. News and World Report says people are now kicking out extended family or single daughters with children-or the latter are choosing to leave an adequate home-precisely because society will provide them free housing. In fact, New York has 3,200 transitional housing units for the homeless that provide private living quarters, baths and a daily restaurant allowance-a better arrangement than people get living with their relatives.

Federal funding for housing has gone from twenty billion dollars in 1978 to over seventy billion dollars in 1990, yet the number homeless seeking new shelters has dramatically increased. While many blame the economy, government statistics show the number of poor people living in crowded households actually dropped significantly from 1.4 million in 1983 to less than a million in 1989. Government provided housing has become a "Field of Dreams" scenario-"if you build it, we will come." This problem will not be solved with money and facilities-families must be built and strengthened, and responsibility must be taught by refusing to reward (and thereby encourage) irresponsibility. The U. S. News article comes to a conclusion in line with the apostle Paul-"the homeless sometimes respond better to discipline than to unfettered support."

I know a man who chose not to work, yet received unemployment benefits twice as high as the salary of his friend who worked forty hours a week. I saw the light go on in his head-"Why work when you don't have to?" I watched that man change over a one year period, as he grew accustomed to not having to work to live. That was ten years ago, and he hasn't had a job since. He still lives off the misguided "help" of society. Meanwhile he has lost both his self-respect and his family. A nation, church or family that subsidizes the lazy spawns laziness. Since laziness leads to poverty, supporting the lazy breeds poverty.

What is Biblical Compassion?

I know from experience that many Christians will be uncomfortable, or even offended, by what I've just been saying. They will think, "This doesn't sound compassionate." But what sounds compassionate and what is compassionate are not always the same. Compassion must not be rooted simply in our feelings, or measured by our own subjective satisfaction in saying "I helped the poor." True compassion sees and deals with the root of the problem. Compassionate parents don't let their children watch whatever they want on TV, eat junk food all day, or play on the freeway-even though doing so may make the children happier (today), and make life easier for the parents (today). They don't automatically give their child the new bicycle he wants-they tell him he can only have a new bicycle if he earns it, then they take the time and effort to show him how to earn it.

The fact is that many of us want to "help the poor" because of the good feeling it gives us. We are concerned about salving our consciences, not with whether our "help" has actually met their real long-term needs. But true compassion gives people what they need, not just what they want. Our primary calling is not to help others (or ourselves) feel good, but to help them be good. Shoveling money and goods at poor people may help us-and them-feel good for the short run. It takes more thought, time and commitment on our part-and theirs-to help them do what is best in the long run. It is terribly unfair to attribute all poverty to laziness. It is terribly unwise to try to help the lazy in the same way we help those who are truly in need.

This concept is a challenge to ministries that open their soup kitchens daily and distribute free food and materials to anyone and everyone. Some inner city missions are exemplary, but others fall into the same unhealthy pattern of fostering irresponsibility that has marred most government programs. Some truly needy will be helped-but others will be reinforced in their laziness, and subsidized in their pursuit of harmful addictions. If by feeding a person tonight, we enable him to spend his money on alcohol rather than food, effectively are we doing anything different than just handing him a bottle?

Of course, sometimes it will be impractical or impossible to screen out the irresponsible. Better to feed some who are irresponsible in the process of helping the truly needy, than let the truly needy (including the children of the irresponsible) suffer in the screening attempt. But better still to try to do both, for Scripture tells us to do both. To exercise such discernment requires taking time to get to know individuals and their unique situations, just as a doctor must diagnose each patient rather than prescribing one general cure for everyone. Tempting as it is to do so, we must refuse to equate biblical compassion with every impersonal or indiscriminate distribution program, whether by government or religious agencies.

What Exactly Should We Do to Help the Poor?

Obviously, a person can be unemployed without being lazy. We need to help the unemployed with his immediate needs, but above all we need to help him find work. Sending him to classes, teaching him a skill, helping him write a resume, coaching him for a job interview-all these may be much more helpful than ongoing financial gifts. When work isn't to be found, we need to provide it however we can. On a few occasions we've helped the unemployed by giving them work on our church grounds. I've come up with a variety of odd jobs around our house that are worthy and constructive. It's important for people's self-respect and initiative to maintain the God-ordained connection between work and income.

The Old Testament pattern of gleaning is a model of how to help the poor in the most positive way (Lev. 19:9-10). God said to leave the corners of the fields uncut so the poor could have food. But notice the grain was not cut, bundled, processed, ground, bagged, transported and delivered to the poor. Provided they were able, the poor were to go to the fields and do the work themselves. This way their needs were met, but they weren't robbed of their dignity nor made irresponsible by a workless welfare system.

We need to develop a screening process that isn't impersonal or dehumanizing, but accurately determines whether a person is in need, and if so, why. Christ's words "Give to him who asks of you" must be seen in the context of the whole Scriptures. Paul commands the church to care for "those widows who are really in need" (1 Tim. 5:3), but says that even in the body of Christ not every widow qualifies for church support. We must be generous, but also be discerning so that our generosity hits the mark.

I have the phone numbers of a few friends who own nurseries. I've told able-bodied street people if they want some honest work to earn money for food and other needs, there's a good chance they can get a job in the fields. If they're not interested, they've screened themselves out and I know I shouldn't give them money. If they are, I can go the next step and see what else I can do for them. (Needless to say, we should look for every opportunity to share the gospel.)

The church is not to take over responsibilities that properly belong to family members (1 Tim. 5:3­5). In light of this principle, our church leaders approached an elderly woman's brother to encourage him to meet her material needs he had neglected. He was embarrassed, but he got involved in the life of his sister precisely because we called on him to. Had we continued helping her, he never would have. It is the church's role to encourage the family to fulfill its responsibilities, not to take over those responsibilities. (Of course, if family members refuse to help, the church must.)

Churches need to help the poor not just by giving money or food, but personal attention-our time, our skills, and our personal interest. An elderly widow doesn't just need a check, she needs someone to take her shopping, to sit and talk with her, to pray with her. She may need someone to mow her lawn, fix her fence, drive her to church. When we see the homeless, God may not just want us to open our pocketbooks, but our homes (Rom. 12:13). When we opened our home to a needy woman for a year, we had the privilege of seeing her come to Christ. No evangelistic efforts are more credible than those authenticated by hospitality. (Even when we open our homes, however, biblical compassion means expecting them to contribute to the household in some meaningful way.)

What many people need is not more money, but personal help in handling the money they have. Good financial counseling, including how to make and stick to a reasonable budget, is a far more valuable gift than $500 to bail someone out of a situation he should never have gotten into in the first place. Direction in how to find and keep a job is much more helpful than putting groceries on a shelf while someone sits home and watches television all day. When a middle aged career person is laid off, he not only needs to find a new job, but may need support to avoid paralytic depression.


Our family gives regularly to World Relief, a ministry that brings immediate help, long-term development, and the gospel of Christ to the needy throughout the world. The fact is that the poorest of the poor live far away from most of us. Local efforts are good, but we must not forget the desperate needs in parts of Africa, Asia and South America. Furthermore, the class called the "poor" in Scripture includes the weak, defenseless and exploited. Efforts on behalf of unborn children, exploited women, the elderly, handicapped and underprivileged immigrants and minorities are close to the heart of God, who calls himself the rescuer of the poor (Job 29:12; Psalm 35:10; Jer. 20:13).

I cannot relate meaningfully to the poor when I am isolated from the poor. For some of us it's a question of walking down the block and getting to know the poor. For others it's driving twenty miles to find a homeless person. Perhaps I must take regular trips away from the cozy suburbs to the inner city. Whole churches have become involved in projects of helping the poor. Some youth groups take regular trips to Mexico. Others put on camps and evangelistic Bible clubs for inner-city children. Churches can go to the ghettos, the jails, the hospitals, and rest homes-wherever there is need.

More radically, instead of following the evangelical pattern of abandoning the city for the suburbs, perhaps its time for more of us to go as missionaries to the poor and live in their midst. Clearly our social programs are not working-if we as Christians will not be the incarnation of Christ's love and wisdom in the inner city, who will?

We must resist the unbiblical rationalization that we cannot make a difference. "But I'm just one person. And we're just a small church. How can we eliminate poverty?" The answer is you can't. Jesus said the poor would always be with us (Mark 14:7). But that shouldn't inhibit our action. A poster asked, "How can you help a billion hungry people?" The answer below was right on target: "One at a time."

Caring for the poor is a sobering responsibility for which we will all be held accountable-"If a man shuts his ears to the cry of the poor, he too will cry out and not be answered" (Prov. 21:13). We must seek to help the poor in the right way, but above all we must help them in some way. Helping the poor and homeless is not a peripheral issue. God links our efforts for the poor directly to our relationship with him. May he one day say of us what he said of King Josiah: "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" (Jer. 22:16).


Ellen L. Bassuk, "Homeless Families," Scientific American, December 1991

Gabriel Constans, "This is Madness," USA Today (Magazine), November 1991, 77-78.

Jay Matthews, "Rethinking the Homeless Myths," Newsweek, April 6, 1992, 29.

David Whitman, "Exodus of the Couch People," U. S. News & World Report, December 23, 1991, 30-32.

"New York: The Wind Will Rattle Your Bones," Newsweek, December 2, 1991

Permissions: Feel free to reproduce and distribute any articles written by Randy Alcorn, in part or in whole, in any format, provided that you do not alter the wording in any way or charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. It is our desire to spread this information, not protect or restrict it.

Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: by Randy Alcorn, Eternal Perspective Ministries, 39085 Pioneer Blvd., Suite 200, Sandy, OR 97055, 503-668-5200, www.epm.org


April 2008 Article

Wedding Gowns

I heard a comment the other day from one of our HAIN volunteers expressing her concern, and maybe a little fear, of taking someone’s wedding gown and cutting it up to make burial garments for babies. Is it a responsibility? It is certainly is a responsibility, a huge one! Accepting a wedding gown brings with it a few of absolute requirements.

#1- Paperwork. It is a requirement to get all the correct paperwork done. Be sure you are registered as an approved seamstress. When you get the dress there is a form to fill out stating you received it. Don’t forget to let the donor know it arrived ok. When you make items and send them off, there is more paperwork to track things at that end too.

#2- The gown. It is imperative to treat the gown with the utmost care. Keeping it separate from other projects so you can track the items you make. Being sure to keep it clean and using all the fabric and pieces is very important.

#3- Sewing. This may be the part that intimidates people the most. But rest assured there are patterns for even the most basic of sewing talents. If you are hesitating taking on the project, I would highly suggest you practice on other fabric until you are comfortable with the process. Then, when your confidence is built on non-threatening fabric, you will be more willing to take on a wedding gown. If you want to practice taking things apart and remaking them, go to the thrift store and by the ugliest dress they have and take it home and chop it up and remake it and practice to your hearts content. It is different remaking garments rather than using flat yardage. Remember, the baby gowns do not have to be extravagant; a simple style is just as beautiful. Besides, the parents of the baby are going to be so grateful to have a handmade gown to wrap their child in. That’s what it is all about anyway!

#4- Timeliness. It is so important to take the proper steps with the paperwork and such, getting the pictures taken, etc. But even more so, set a goal to be done with a gown within a reasonable time and get the baby garments out to the hospitals. It is easy to let the wedding gowns sit in the shipping box for weeks and put it off. For me, the wedding gown has to be done and out the door within one month. I will spend afternoon just cutting out the patterns. Then when I have a few minutes, I can sit down and sew one gown without having to mess up the entire kitchen with scraps all over the floor. If I have more time, I can whip out several gowns in one afternoon, because they are already cut and ready to go.

#5- Serve with Love. If you put a little extra love into each baby gown, it will show. You do not have to be an accomplished seamstress to make amazing garments to bring joy to those who are the focus of our ministry. I would encourage you to recognize within yourself that hidden talent which God can bring to the surface and make shine if you are willing to allow him to work through you.

I would encourage those of you who have been thinking you might like to try your hand at sewing wedding gowns to really give it a try. There are so many women who are willing to donate their gowns for this a worthy cause, we can use your talent! We can even help you develop it. Do you feel inspired?

Article by Angie Riggsby

April 2008


April 2008 Article

Mary and All of the other HAIN volunteers,

I was anxiously waiting for my appointment to arrive with Rose Ann Favela the Assistant Manager of the Labor and Delivery Unit at the Kaiser Hospital in Antioch, California. I wanted to hand deliver the donated baby items from Lynn and Ann Vanderlaan and myself. Kaiser Hospital in Antioch, California is a new hospital with a new Labor and Delivery Unit. Their needs for baby items were requested on our H.A.I.N website and since I am so close to them (about 40 minutes drive) I felt like this was the one that I needed to personally take on as a volunteer for our charity. When I arrived with the 2 boxes of baby items and Rose Ann took me into her office and opened the boxes of goodies, she was just overwhelmed with joy to see all the blankets, gowns, booties, rosaries and hats. Her office door was open and as I was taking each item out of the boxes and showing her the donated items Rose Ann would call out to every person walking by "come see all the things for the babies". What surprised me the most was each person, including Rose Ann, asked how much each item was going to cost to purchase for their unit. When I told them that every single item was a gift - there is no cost - their jaws would drop. There had not been anyone or group ever just give them items for the babies. The joy that I felt inside is more than I can describe. They were and are so very thankful for each and every item. One of the NICU nurses came by while we were looking at the baby items and said " I have a 29 week gestation baby boy, could I give him a blanket to take on the helicopter ride to Sacramento? He is leaving in about 30 minutes". I felt very honored that they would want that little baby to have one of our H.A.I.N. charity blankets around him. Rose Ann took me around to each of the nurses stations to show off all the baby items she received. We (our H.A.I.N. charity) can be very proud of our volunteers. All of the time and care that goes into making these precious baby items, the gowns, hats, booties and blankets is so very much appreciated by the nurses and doctors and so much more the parents can have something to hold on to - a memory of their little baby. It is needed so much. If our work can change a parents grieving for even a short time it is certainly worth all of the time and love that went into making that special gift. I received the most wonderful thank you card from Rose Ann. All of the nurses and Doctors signed it in appreciation of our generous donation.

Rosa Higgins


April 2008 Article

In a day when it seems that everytime you turn on the t.v., a schoolchild is doing wrong or hurting others, this story reminds us that there are still good hearted children all around us. My name is Kristi Kendall and my husband and I both work in the elementary school system and we had an idea to let several of the classes make the memory boxes! I went to the classrooms explaining a little about what charity means and what giving means to them. I told them that charity meant giving to others in a time of need without expecting to get anything back and asked them if they could give me some examples. "Buying a toy for a kid who doesn't get much at Christmas", said a 1st grader. "Putting money in those jars at the store", said another 1st grader. "Making cards for the soliders", from a 3rd grader. "Picking up a binky and giving it back to your brother", 1st grader (and my son). "Raking up an old persons yard", Kindergarten. "Sending food to people who have been hurt by hurricanes", 3rd grade. It really blew me away to know that in a time of violent video games and television and an age of "it's all about me"; these small children understood the real meaning of giving. I pray that these little ones will always have a big heart and full of love and to not let some of the ugliness in the world change it.

All in all, some 85 memory boxes were made! In the kindergarten class, they also painted windchime crosses which was an idea from my youngest because he thought that each time it chimed it was an angel flying by. We would of liked to have had to whole school participate and have had many other Teachers ask if they could do it too, but unfortunatly I have to make a car payment this month and will have to wait. I can't wait to begin sending them to those in need and hope that they are just a bit more special because they were made by a child.




April 2008 Article

Progesterone May Reduce Premature Births


Feb 6, 2003

By PAUL ELIAS, AP Biotechnology Writer

A North Carolina doctor presented results Thursday of a groundbreaking study that showed the hormone progesterone prevented premature births in a surprisingly high number of high-risk pregnancies. "The evidence of this treatment's effectiveness was so dramatic, the research was stopped early," said the study's lead researcher, Dr. Paul Meis of Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. Progesterone is naturally produced by the ovaries. It softens the uterus lining into a spongy bed that holds a fertilized egg. Weekly injections of the hormone reduced the chance of premature births by 34 percent in the 306 high-risk women who received the therapy, the study reported. An additional 153 women were injected with a placebo. All the women had previously given birth prematurely, the single biggest indication of risk.

The study was carried out at the 19 centers that comprise the Maternal Fetal Medicine Units Network under the National Institutes of Health (news - web sites). Meis unveiled the results in San Francisco at the annual meeting of the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine. "The results are so good that it's surprising," said Dr. Fredric Frigoletto, chief of obstetrics at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. "No intervention that we have ever applied has had any measurable effect. This is very good news." Doctors have prescribed progesterone for years to help infertile and menopausal women. Meis said progesterone had been previously toyed with as a preventive treatment for premature births in the 1960s and 1970s, but no one has completed a serious study on the subject. "I think it's going to awaken people to an old idea that kind of slipped away," said Dr. Alan DeCherney, chair of the Obstetrics and Gynecology department at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Emile Papiernik, a French obstetrician, conducted a tiny progesterone study in 1970 that showed promise. But he said he couldn't interest any pharmaceutical companies or government agencies to fund a more comprehensive experiment. "This has been sitting on the pharmacist's shelf for more than 30 years," Papiernik said. In 2001, about 476,000 babies were born too soon in the United States — a 27 percent increase since 1981, according to the March of Dimes. One in eight babies was born before the 37th week of pregnancy, which is considered full term. "The problem is huge," said Dr. Nancy S. Green, a New York City pediatrician and medical director of the March of Dimes. Last week she announced the organization's $75 million, five-year program to reduce premature births. Babies born prematurely are at increased risk for neurological, hearing and behavioral problems. The average hospital charge in 2000 for a premature baby was $58,000, compared with $4,300 for a typical newborn, according to the March of Dimes. Some of the increase in premature births can be attributed to more older women giving birth and the explosion of obesity in the country, Green said. But fully half of premature births have no known cause, Green said. The March of Dimes said black women give birth prematurely at disproportionately high rates: 17.5 percent of all births to black women last year were premature, compared with the national average of 11.9 percent. Frigoletto said that high rate has been studied extensively — but no definitive, scientific conclusions have been drawn. In Meis' study, 59 percent of the women were black. The researchers concluded that race didn't influence the hormone's effectiveness. "I think it really will attract a lot of interest," Meis said of the study. "This is the first fairly effective treatment for pre-term births."

Natural Progesterone Prevents Early Miscarriage

from "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Menopause" by John Lee, MD page 244.

Early miscarriages, also known as spontaneous abortions, are becoming more frequent. It is estimated that 25 percent of all pregnancies will miscarry, half of them before the eighth week. If a woman suffers three or more miscarriages in succession, the problem is termed "habitual" abortion. Only 15 percent of them can be traced to a specific maternal organic disease. The chief cause of early loss of pregnancy is now thought to be luteal phase failure, in which the ovarian production of progesterone fails to increase sufficiently during the first several weeks after fertilization. Maintaining the secretory endometrium (uterine lining) and the development of the embryo are dependent upon adequate luteal-supplied progesterone. The failure of progesterone production during this crucial time of pregnancy mirrors the rising incidence of progesterone deficiency occurring during the ten or more years before menopause. While there may be a number of factors involved (such as stress or nutritional deficiencies), one such culprit may be exposure (even embryogenic) to xenoestrogens.

When a woman has experienced several early miscarriages and the luteal phase failure is suspected, I have usually recommended progesterone supplementation (in addition to nutritional support) starting after ovulation (day 14 or so) and continued on (when pregnancy is confirmed by pregnancy blood tests) for two months. After two months plcacenta-derived progesterone becomes dominant. Reducing the supplemental progesterone during the third month should be gradual so as to avoid any abrupt drop in progesterone levels. I have had success with this approach, and I see no harm in trying it. Your doctor can easily montior your progesterone levels with saliva hormone assays.

Note: There is so much more information online.

My youngest child was born full term because I used Natural progesterone cream. Though my whole pregnancy. My body lacked making enough of this hormone. I suffered from 1 miscarriage, 1 premature birth and my daughter passed away. I also has 2 other premature births. I only carried 1 pregnancy to full term with no help.

There are many types of progesterone. Many that doctors suggest to woman that may not be natural. Many doctors give the hormone, then have the person stop using it at a certain time (16 weeks) in pregnancy. The risk of miscarriage is greater when a hormone that is important in keeping pregnancy. When this hormone is stopped to soon it sends a message to your body that its time for labor. With my youngest when it was about time to have baby that is when I slowly weaned off of the hormone until I was not longer using it. With in a few days my cervix started to dilate. There are so many sites out there to study and read more information on this vital study.

We recommend a few




http://www.johnleemd.com/ <--- official site


April 2008 Article

Frogs say "rip it, rip it." Did you know that knitters also use this term and it’s used a couple of different ways? One is a technique where you are undoing knitting that you have already done but another way is how my little sister taught me to save some money. I know that all of us from time to time have had to wait to buy a skein of yarn to make more things for Hain and I am always looking for a way to save money when buying yarn and this is one way of doing that. It’s not a glamorous way but it works. I go to thrift shops, Goodwill or even yard sales to get already made sweaters that I can use. Around this area you can get an adult sweater for as little as $1.00.

You do need to know that you can only use certain sweaters to do this process on. You need to check and makes sure that the sweaters do not have serged seams. Occasionally, you will find a sweater that will have serged seams on the sleeves but the body part is not sewn this way. I usually remove the sleeves from the sweater then all you do is unravel the sweater. The yarn will have a crimped effect to it as you unravel it you need to make long wraps (I use the back of a chair) when you are finished with this step tie it in about 3 or 4 different places to keep it together and wash it. If you do not like the crimped affect of the yarn, hang the yarn up and put some weight on the bottom wraps, it is best to air dry the wraps. Now that this process is completed you can knit to your heart’s content and actually that is where is fun begins. The crimp effect of the yarn does add a nice effect to the articles that you are making.

I have found some sweaters that have been knitted with very fine yarns and this type works wonderful for preemie hats, booties, blankets and many other articles. Wash the articles when completed and you have a wonderful piece of work for a fraction of the price. When making preemie things you can get many sets out of one sweater.



April 2008 Article

"If sometimes our poor people have had to die of starvation, it is not because God didn't care for them, but because you and I didn't give, were not instruments of love in the hands of God, to give them bread, to give them clothing; because we did not recognize him, when once more Christ came in distressing disguise -- in the hungry man, in the lonely man, in the homeless child, and seeking for shelter."

When I came across this picture it repelled me and I passed by it quickly, but then I had a prompting to go back and look upon him as someone God loves. It has been difficult, and when I thought about posting him, at first I thought him to distressing to add. But as I overcame the shock of his afflictions, I knew I had to post him, with Proverbs 28:27 in mind - "He who gives to the poor will lack nothing, but he who closes his eyes to them receives many curses." I wonder if the "many curses" are those we endure because of a heart that becomes trained to shut off needs and the resulting lack of depth to our lives?

Mother Teresa - Photo by J F Ochoa, Abandoned

Blog: http://www.fcb3.blogspot.com/


April 2008 Article

Thank You for Giving Me Life

Mommy and Daddy, I want you to know

Not a day goes by that I don’t love you so.

I know you miss me and cry a lot

My love for you will never stop.

I know you are sad thinking I never got to spend my life with you

But I did only for a short time.

I remember so many neat things about our lives together.

I will remember living beneath your heart, Mommy, my dear

While listening to my Daddy sing pretty songs.

My brother and sister just laughing and playing all day long,

Jumping around like little bullfrogs.

Jesus and His pretty angels came and got me.

I got to go to a place where I can be free.

I am so happy with Jesus giggling and smiling.

Daddy, you’d like it here with the choirs of angels singing.

Mommy, the flowers are so pretty and smell so sweet.

Mommy, I remember everything about you,

I can still feel your heartbeat.

It’s so perfect here with so many things to see.

I know you are so very sad since I went away

But remember we will be together again someday.

We are part of each other, we are still a family.

I took pieces of your heart and good memories with me,

when I went away.

I know you want to see me and will one day.

Just read the Bible to learn about the place where I live.

Please don’t blame yourselves,

God needed me here.

Place your lives in God’s hands, His Spirit will lead the way.

Prayers are the stairs to heaven.

When you feel sad, know I’m right there

Because before I left you, Jesus put MY love in your heart

So you would always f eel me, as part of you like a special hug.

I can always see you my Mommy and my Daddy

And feel you next to me

Because you are a part of me for all eternity.

Love, Your Heavenly Angel

© Mary Cate Bratcher - August 13, 2007

Used with Permission by Author on website http://heavenlyangelsinneed.com

Written for my Great-Niece, named Heaven Lee Angel who was Stillborn August 9-2007

E-Mail Author weltonmarycate@cs.com to rewrite for your particular needs!


April 2009 Article

HAIN serves families in more ways than one… a mother’s perspective.

If you are reading this article, then you already know how much good HAIN does for families in need. I want to tell you a story of how HAIN helps my family in a rather unusual way.

I have two teenage daughters (and three sons), both lovely girls, artistic, kind and willing to serve. Every once in a while, however, one of them will make a rather bad choice and get into a bit of trouble. Now, I am not typically a “grounding” mom, because, that means, I am grounded too! My latest and greatest “motherly-training-tool” is community service based groundation. The teen is assigned a certain number of community service hours and are grounded until the hours are complete. Being as most negative choices a teenager will make are usually of the selfish kind, I figure that some community service is just the ticket to overcome a selfish nature.

Recently the 16 year old daughter made one of those opportunistic bad choices which landed her at the mercy of the mother. Service rocks. She had quite a few hours to work off and I told her it was perfectly ok for her to use her artistic abilities and help with some HAIN projects.

She spent two days working at the kitchen table painting memory boxes. I was able to spend quite a bit of that time sitting and making mother’s bracelets and painting memory boxes with her. Remember, this is a punishment, she is in trouble! But, what a great opportunity for the two of us to sit together, working on things for other people, having some great conversation. There was no contention, no negativity, it was a pleasant uplifting time spent with my daughter to build bonds and give service.

HAIN is such a blessing TO so many and IN so many different ways. I am a little excited for the 18 year old daughter to get home from work because we have some bracelets to make this afternoon. Isn’t grounding wonderful?


April 2009 Article

Yesterday I took a box of baby items to Jordan Valley Hospital. Lorraine, the volunteer director, was on the phone when I arriveed and a young woman was sitting in her office waiting. When Lorraine was off the phone she invited me in and introduced the other lady as Julie, a new hospital volunteer. Lorraine explained that I was delivering baby items made by my charity group, and when she showed Julie the preemie hats Joy had made, she kinda teared up and said she wished she could knit and crochet and make things like that too. Lorraine then told her about my brother-in-law Patrick being a head nurse at their hospital - although he had nothing to do with Jordan Valley accepting HAIN items at the time I started going there, he has been a good behind-the-scenes "cheerleader" for HAIN's efforts after learning that I was donating there.

They both enjoyed the story of how I used Patrick's knowledge of my charity donations in a deceptive way. In the summer of 2007 we had a family reunion-campout near Elko, NV, and Patrick's wife Emily was expecting a baby that September, they had lost their 4th baby the previous year so this little one was especially important to them. Normally I have more than one knitting project in progress at a time, and one of them in this case was a sweater for the new baby. I usually take a knitting project along when we travel, so I took that sweater along, knowing that Patrick & Emily wouldn't know for sure it was meant for them. The situation was better than expected - someone asked me what I was making and I told them it was a baby sweater without providing further details. Patrick himself spoke up, "She makes lots of baby things to donate to hospitals!" Talk about needing a poker face, I knew if I laughed or even smiled someone would suspect who that sweater was really for! And yes, they loved the sweater after baby Anson was born on Labor Day.


April 2009 Article

By Shannon Arsnon (spelling last name check)

Have you ever thought to yourself, "why did I do that? Why did I go this way? Why didn't I do that? or I really should have done this." Then seconds, minutes, hours or even days later have your question answered in a way you never thought. Your mistake kept you safe by avoiding an accident that occurred on the street you should have been on. Somehow your mistake turned out to not be a mistake but blessing in disguise. I had one of those yesterday.

For a couple weeks I have had 2 boxes of items waiting to be delivered to the NICU at my local hospital. I kept putting off making the trip because....well...I really have no good excuse other than simple procrastination. I now have a better answer....

Yesterday afternoon, my doorbell rang. I open the door to find an old neighbor and her son standing there. After greeting each other, the lady said she needed to talk to me and that she needed my help. I asked if everything was okay, to which she responded "well, no". I let them in and asked what I could do. She explained that her son and his girlfriend had lost their baby. He was born at about 24 weeks, weighing 1 pound 1 ounce and was 11 inches long. He was born and died minutes later, unable to take his first breaths. My heart sank. I knew too well what they were going through and feeling. She said she knew I made clothing for preemies and asked if she could pay me to make something to fit her tiny grandson. I rose to my feet, located the boxes in the dining room, and removed the only 2 gowns I had small enough to fit. I offered them the two outfits I had and even offered to make one if they preferred different colors than what I had on hand. The young man selected a blue gown with a baseball appliqué and a matching blue baseball cap. I then pulled a couple blankets from my box and offered those to him. I asked what, if anything, the hospital was able to provide them for his son. He responded that his son was wrapped in a blanket with a hat that was too large, and they left the hospital with his things in a purple memory box. I wanted to be able to hand them an appropriate memory box, however, I had no boy boxes completed in this delivery. I offered to personalize them a memory box to match the sports themed outfit daddy had picked for his son. They accepted, stating anything I could do would be greatly appreciated. As they were leaving, again the lady attempted to pay me for the items they were carrying home, to which I refused. I somberly remarked, "This is from my Angel to yours. I'm sorry for your loss."

Sometimes we kick ourselves for making mistakes or in my case putting off something for later. This is proof that things happen for a reason, things are not mere coincidences but rather guidance from a higher being. I'm honored this family came to me and I was able to help them leave so empty-handed.


April 2010 Article

Finding Peace

By Stacy Vaka

2 Thessalonians 3:16

“Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.”

When I was diagnosed with my infertility problems last year, I felt many emotions. I felt denied, angry, and distressed, to name a few, but worst of all, I felt betrayed by God. How could He let this happen to me?

It wasn’t until several months later, after many nights spent crying and demanding that God fix me, that I lay utterly exhausted. It takes a great deal of energy to be angry at God, and that day I realized I could continue to futilely fight against His will, or I could surrender to His plan and trust that He would take care of me. So that day I asked God to take my life into His hands, and I told Him that whatever happened, I would trust Him to do what’s best for me, even if that meant not having children.

Almost immediately I felt a sense of peace wash over me, and I was suddenly annoyed at myself for not having trusted Him sooner. Of course God would take care of me. He takes care of all His children. Hasn’t He told us if we ever need anything, all we have to do is ask? It had never occurred to me to ask for peace.

Peace may seem a distant dream for you right now, when all you want is that most precious gift of a child, but Jesus has the authority to bring peace to us at all times, in every way. There is no reason for us to torment ourselves with our heartbreaks when He is right there, waiting to comfort us. Don’t fall into the trap of believing you will never feel peace again, for nothing is impossible with Christ. He can cure the blind, turn water into wine, and yes, He can also bring peace to the broken hearted.

But in order to experience His peace, we must take that first step of completely surrendering our situations to Him. We must be willing to trust Him enough to take the reins of our lives and guide us where He will. He will never steer us in the wrong direction. Remember that He is the Lord of peace, and as long as He is with us, everything will be okay.

“Dear Lord, please help me to find peace with my current situation. I am placing my life in your hands, and I trust you make everything turn out alright. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”


April 2010 Article

Hi Mary, this isn't much as I haven't had any special experiences regarding HAIN lately, but I hope you can use it.


When making booties and you aren't sure you have enough yarn, this little trick works for me. You can work on both booties at the same time, so if you run out of yarn and have to use another color, they will match.

1. Cast on the appropriate number of stitches for the first bootie. Push stitches toward other the other end of the needle as far as possible.

2. Using the other end of the yarn skein, cast on the same number of stitches for the second bootie on the same needle as the first bootie.

3. Knit 1 row on the stitches closest to the point, then move on to the other bootie and knit one row. From here you do whatever the pattern says, the only difference being is that you will duplicate every row on 2 separate pieces.

4. When you get to a point where there isn't enough yarn left to complete the next row on both booties, cut the yarn in the middle and change to another color. At this point you can temporarily move one bootie to a stitch holder, or continue working on both at the same time if you can easily access both ends of the skein.

5. When finished, cast off like normal and sew seams as needed.

By Anna Vandenhazel


Dec 2005 article -when HAIN had angel stations

The Pennsylvania Angel Station #43 might have been quiet on the boards

but....we are active in our community. This coming week will see Memory

Boxes being made with a new faux tin punch Angel stamp designed by Janice M.

Biscoe. Up to now, we have been very busy getting more burial outfits ready

for distribution and also our Annual Dicken's Day is tomorrow and there are

a lot of things to do in order to be ready for the Children's Bazaar that we

have at St. Paul's Episcopal Church. All the vendors in town dress up in

Victorian clothes and there are soup sales, crafts, entertainment and just a

really good time. All monies from the sale of homemade items (less 15%) will

be donated to the church for their use in the Summer Bible School. We are

donating all unsold articles to children who have been ravaged by the

hurricanes so that they can have a gift for their relatives. From neck

coolers, to tree ornaments, there is quite a big choice. This relates to

HAIN in that we will be knitting at our booth and have samples of baby

gowns, hats, booties and literature to hand out to one and all so that the

local community people and visitors will see that we are a very caring

community who will help the littlest ones; who cannot help themselves.

We had 2 "baby born asleep" deaths last week at local hospitals and I think

that our organization is now getting known in the community. The reason?

The paper, in the obit. column used the term "born sleeping" to describe the

baby. We want one and all to know that we believe in the dignity of death

and that the dignity should be offered to one and all, regardless of


In another vein, I heard from a friend who returned from Florida and had

spoken with a man who lost twins almost 20 years ago. She told them of our

HAIN organization and he was emotionally choked up that there were people

who truly cared. Go Florida!

In our Station #43, we might only have a few members listed but we have

almost 15 ladies and a gentleman who are knitting, crocheting and sewing.

As stated on the homepage of HAIN, volunteers sometimes have personal

experience with losing a baby or babies and that is what transpired here in

our group. We have a Shawl Ministry as you know but part of it has grown

into a wonderful HAIN organization and I am proud of one and all with their

sincere commitment to the cause.

We are planning on having a fund raiser but we are not too sure of the

direction yet. I will keep one and all up-to-date.

Personally, I would like to thank all the HAIN members for being such great

people with patterns, ideas, suggestions, comments, prayers and most of all,

Love of our Lord with whom all, and I mean ALL things are possible.

This is a strong group and I have come to rely on some for their great

ideas, their thoughtful prayers and thoughts and just a warm feeling of


Janice M. Biscoe

PA - Angel Station #43


Jan 2008 Article

Wedding Gown Tips for the Experienced or New Seamstress

Angie Riggsby

One important thing to do, when making the decision to remake wedding gowns into garments for children, is to be very organized. Each wedding gown is a special gift to Heavenly Angels in Need and needs to be treated as such. I will share a few organizing tips I am using which may help you get started.

I purchased several clear storage containers. Each container has its own wedding dress “assigned” to it. I put the dress, the donation paperwork and wedding gown kit in the container with the dress. The dress may sit there for a month or two until I get to it. This keeps it clean and dust free, all the paperwork intact and everything ready to go when its turn finally comes!

I finally narrowed my patterns down to a couple I really like and are easy to work with. My favorite is a two piece pattern with a one piece bodice and a skirt. I typically cut out four or five bodices of different sizes to start with so I can add the skirts as I go. Whenever anything is cut out, the pieces go right back into the storage container until the pieces are ready to use.

I keep all the finished pieces in the container; this includes blankets, gowns, wraps, etc. I put the finished items in gallon Ziploc bags until it’s time to send them off to the recipient. Before the item goes in the Ziploc bag, it gets logged in the wedding gown kit and gets its picture taken. This is a little trick I use to remind myself all the paperwork has been done for that item. It’s also a great visual as the Ziploc’s grow and the fabric pile diminishes!

When I have used the bulk of the material from any given dress, the useable scraps, beads, embellishments, etc. all go into another “scrap” bin. This gives me things to add as necessary to the items I am working on and supports the “nothing-goes-to-waste” theory I try to work under!

I am sure there are many great ideas out there, so please submit them for the next newsletter article! Please send your ideas to me at ariggsby@cREMOVED FOR PRIVACY.net


Dec 2008 Article

Oh, and I just have to share this. My neighbor had

a 1.5 pound baby boy around July. I ran over and

gave her a tiny hat and I think it was about 16 inch

blanket. She said the blanket laid over the

little bed perfectly, but she told me the tiny hat was too Big!

I about fainted. The smallest baby I have touched was 2.5 lbs.

I made another hat, and I just about cried thinking a baby could be so tiny.

I never knew how much my little angel weighed and I never

got to hold my baby. So, this was a little hard for me but it

felt good to do at the same time. The next hat, literally fit

on an egg it was so little.

She said the second one fit perfect. This little one made

it and came home three to four months later. He is

still a bit small but healthy and an absolute miracle.

I took care of this mothers own mother in the unit

I work at in the hospital. She kept me update on

her grandbaby every day she was there, once she

found out I was her neighbor and she had met

me already (one time). Jesus, is so good. He

has a way of placing us in the right spot at the

right time. I got to care for the grandma in her

time of need and at the same time give her grand baby

some items. It feels so good to see a mother that is

obviously worn down from stress and grief smile

for just a moment when she realizes that, she is loved and

so is her child. Anyway, I just wanted to share this.

I hope you don't mind.

Thanks, and I pray the Lord Bless's your day!



Jan 2008 Article

Karin asked: Hi everyone. I crocheted a preemie burial gown and the gown is too "open" or "lacey". I think I need to line it. But I've never done that before. Can anyone give me any tips about how to do that? Thanks in advance for any and all suggestions.

Angie answered: You would just need to cut and sew a lining "dress" out of fabric for the inside. I would suggest you hand sew it in rather than machine sew it. Do you have lining material? I have a bunch froma wedding dress I am working on right now. It's white of course, so if that would work for your color scheme, you are welcome to have some.

Can you post of picture of it? I can see if I have a pattern that would work for going underneath it.

Karin asked: Hi Angie, I have some material that I think would be suitable. Thanks for offering me some of yours though. Unfortunately, I don't have a digital camera so I have no way of posting a picture. Do you think if I just laid the crocheted dress on the fabric I could trace around it and add some seam allowances? The bodice isn't too lacey at all, its just the skirt part. I think I can do this but I'm a little afraid I might Does anyone have a picture of a skirt lining that they've sewn in?

Elaine answered: I've lined a few dresses with cotton instead of dress lining too. I just traced out the skirt and added 1/2 inch or so for seam allowance and just hand tacked it to the inside. I hope this helps.

Angie answered: Just lay out the skirt part trace a little bigger, cut, sew, hem and then hand tack into the crocheted gown. Good luck. Let me know if you need any more help or ideas!


Kangaroo Care

Jan 2007 Article off site with permission

Kangaroo Care for Premature Babies

Premature babies, or preemies, require special attention and considerations. Preemies in the Intensive Care Nursery (ICN) at John Muir Medical Center- Walnut Creek Campus often receive what is called Kangaroo Care, a simple but powerfully effective therapy that is very helpful for baby and mom.

What Is Kangaroo Care?

Kangaroo Care is but one of the techniques of the ICN's developmentally supportive care, a constellation of techniques and caring modalities to meet the needs of its delicate, very sensitive preemies. It is a skin-to-skin experience in which a preemie is wrapped next to its mother's chest while the mother is resting in a reclining chair. The rise and fall of the mother's chest as she breathes and the sound of her heartbeat provide a soothing rhythm for the baby, says Sue Cleaver, ICN Clinical Coordinator. The mother's body warmth keeps baby comfortable and feeling safe.

The process gets its name from the experience of a kangaroo baby, known as a joey. A joey is born before it is fully developed and for its first six months lives in its mother's pouch. It then leaves the warmth and safety of the pouch to venture outside.

Does It Work?

Offering a strong endorsement for Kangaroo Care and her entire experience at the ICN is Janine Pearson of Martinez whose preemie, Nicholas, was born there. I just can't say enough about the experience, Pearson says. All the nurses and staff were so open. Dr. Scott, (Medical Director of the ICN) was first rate. They all listened to me and educated me.They made a big effort to get me any information or help I wanted.

Pearson explained that she entered the hospital when she was only 24 weeks pregnant and starting to go into labor. Since 24 weeks is far short of the 38 to 40 weeks of a full term pregnancy, she chose to enter the hospital where she could stay in bed and hope to postpone the birth. This tactic delayed the birth for a little over four weeks and Nicholas was born February 10, 2006 at 28 weeks and 5 days, weighing 3 lbs. He weighed 5 lbs. 12 oz. when he went home on March 28, 2006.

After birth, Nicholas was put on a continuous positive airway pressure device to facilitate breathing, Pearson explained. After the third day, Nicholas was off this machine and breathing well by himself. Then came Kangaroo Care, Pearson says It's as close to being in the womb as you can get.From the beginning, he settled down and seemed just to melt into me. It was so bonding and was very calming for him and me. And, Eric (his dad) liked doing it to. He fell asleep.


Kangaroo Care is a simple practice with profound benefits, says Cleaver. Studies show these babies get off ventilators sooner, gain weight faster, do better with feeding and go home sooner. It also results in decreased parent anxiety. It's very empowering for them. They no longer feel like helpless bystanders.

Among the other Kangaroo Care benefits for preemies are:

Decrease in the output of stress hormones

Less crying

Lower oxygen requirements

Benefits for moms include improved breast milk production, increased selfconfidence in caring for their preemie, knowledge that they are doing something positive for their baby, and less anxiety and depression. For dads, most of whom decide to offer Kangaroo Care also, the benefits include increased selfconfidence in caring for preemies and the knowledge they are helping their baby in a very significant way.

A guiding principle when caring for preemies is remembering that they would, under normal circumstances, still be in the womb. They are underequipped to deal with the stimuli they receive in the ICN, Cleaver says. They have to deal with bright lights, noise and the discomfort of medical procedures and they can quickly use up all their reserves of energy.

The main goal of 'developmentally supportive care' is to keep each baby as comfortable and free from stress as possible. For example, we put our little patients into a soft cocoon of buntings and blankets so that they can stay in a fetal position with their arms and legs tucked close to their body. That technique is only one of a long list of guidelines and directions all aimed at providing comfort and reassurance for the preemies.

Other Care Techniques

Another important element of ICN care is the Golden Hour Script, developed by a multidisiplinary team of physicians, nurses and respiratory therapists, which gives comprehensive guidelines for the stabilization of extremely premature babies. The Golden Hour- the first hour of a premature baby's life-is considered vital because the treatment provided during that time can have long term effects.

The process begins in the delivery room, Cleaver says. If a newborn is experiencing breathing problems, a tube is inserted into the baby's mouth and windpipe. The tube is attached to a special device called a Neopuff, which assists the baby's breathing by providing breaths at a constant pressure. With older devices it was possible to over inflate the baby's lungs because it was difficult to accurately control the pressure of each breath, Cleaver says. Now that risk is significanlty reduced.

The newly developed Golden Hour Script is a comprehensive guideline for doctors, nurses and other staff that has been incredibly successful, Cleaver says. Staff is completely supportive, because it works and they can see what it does for these tiny babies. We are getting babies off ventilators sooner and have observed a drop in chronic lung disease. We believe the Golden Hour Script will have long term effects for our premature babies and possibly help them go home sooner.


Jan 2009 Article

The Childrens Division was happy to announce the delivery to the PAC center last year. We had collected for them for a while the year before and they had said they had enough at the time we were ready for delivery and then we decided we would store the items until we knew where they should go.

Many volunteers had sent items such as clothing, bottles, and other baby items to donate and so we had a lot for whomever needed it.

It was a good thing we had decided to hold on and store the items as the PAC center had an emergency need. They unfortuately had an arsenest that completely destroyed everything they had including all the clothes so they were in need of every item we had saved.

When we delivered the items Debbie Tracey gave us a tour of her beautiful rented place she had transformed until her building was renovated. She showed us plans for the reconstructed building and we met some lovely volunteers that were helpful unloading all the boxes and one that would be arranging them in the alloted places.

We were all in tears and so excited to be able to help Debbie when the time was right. Our volunteers have truely blessed many babies for a long time.

This year Heavenly Angels in Need delivered "Sibling Support Bags", for children in crisis situations, twice to the Lebanon Hospital. The reception was a total surprise to them and watching the surprised look on their face was truely amazing.

I, Pauline, had never approached anyone in an emergency room and just gave them something, I had always had an emergency situation for a reason for being there.

The secretaries and nurses were so excited to get the bags with toys and blankets in them and we all had our eyes welled up with tears. Both times we donated the we were greeted with awe and greatfulness because the need for the items were there.

I would encourage anyone who wants to donate to an emergency room to just ask them there and bypass the regular part of the hospital.

The ER also sent a thank you right away and said they had taken the delivery all over the hospital and showed it off.

It was such a heart warming time to share with our local emergency care workers and I look forward to making mny more deliveries to them and the other emergency responders in our area.

Thank you to all the HAIN volunteers for making this happen.

Nov 25, 2008

A big thank you for the many wonderful gift bags for our little ones. You all did so much work and a lot of love went into each bag. We are anxious to see the looks on their faces when we give them a special bag. Thanks for all your caring and work. We also shared them with other areas of the hospital that take care of little ones. The Emergency Dept. staff.

We brought in donations and they sent in a thank you over email (same day)


Crochet 101

Jan 2009 Article

Crocheting 101 – Many of the ladies in my Women’s Fellowship group do not know how to crochet and seem to shy away from it. Since I learned to crochet before knitting, I have always felt more comfortable with one loop on my hook instead of several on a knitting needle. Some tell me they can’t learn to crochet, but I respond with, “Then you don’t have the right teacher!”

Crocheting is basically working with a chain stitch upon which you build other stitches. I would suggest you start with a four ply yarn and a size H or N hook. This will be large enough for you to see the actual stitches.

Begin by making a loop on the hook, just as in knitting. Now take the crochet hook with the one loop and yarn over and pull through the loop. (If you knit, you already know how to do the basic crochet stitch because you sometimes drop a stitch and have to pull it back up to put it back on the needle.) To make your chain, continue pulling the yarn through the loop on the hook until you have a long chain (ch) with the number of stitches required by the pattern.

The next stitch you may do is a single crochet (sc). How you do this is to insert your needle in the second stitch back from the hook and pull the yarn through again. Now you have two loops on your hook. Yarn over and pull through both loops…single crochet made. You may need to continue this down the chain if your instructions call for it.

A half double crochet (hdc) is made by yarning over, putting the hook down into a stitch and pulling up the yarn, and yarning over again and pulling through all three loops so you are back to one loop on the hook again.

To make a double crochet (dc), you yarn over and then put your hook through the stitch, pull a yarn up, and yarn over again, pull through two loops at a time, and yarn over again and pull through the last two loops until you are back to one loop on the hook.

A treble crochet (tr) is yarning over twice, going down into the stitch and yarning over, pulling that loop back up, and yarning over two stitches at a time until you are back to one loop.

When the pattern says to join with a slip stitch (sl st), it means after chaining the number of stitches required in the pattern, you put your hook back down into the very first chain stitch, yarn over and pull through the stitch and right on through the stitch on your hook. This makes a circle. The more practice you have with these steps, the more comfortable and quick you will become.

If you were successful with the above steps, you now can make all of the following stitches:

ch = Chain

sc = Single crochet

hdc = Half double crochet

dc = Double crochet

tr = Treble crochet

sl st = slip stitch

For those of you who are more visual learners, please check out the web links below. There are pictures as well as a video to go along with the instructions. One might be more helpful to you than another, so I am including several options:





Video of basic crocheting:


Happy crocheting!

Sign in to follow this  

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.