This project led is by the Sheffield Circuit Justice and Peace Group, soon to become the District Justice Seekers community of practice. The quilt will be based on the words of Micah 6:8 What does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
Our quilt will be assembled from square blocks produced by individuals and groups across our district, and is to be unveiled on 22 April at the District Gathering, on a theme ofHow to be a JUST church in an UNJUST world? addressing both how we relate well to each other, and how we are called to respond to the world around us.
Although the end product will be a giant quilt, the purpose is to create opportunities for people to come together to think more about how the themes of the Walking with Micah project (see below) impact on their lives, and to visualise these reflections as part of a wider conversation. It draws on centuries old traditions in Europe, the Americas, and beyond, of meeting together to develop quilts. The Chilean patchwork of resistance, developed following the overthrow of the elected government in 1973, is a particular example. This participative quilting (which people will be able to interpret liberally according to their artistic preferences and dexterity) also enables those who best express themselves through art and craft rather than words to be represented in a larger than circuit context. Whilst there is no requirement for every church to participate, having participation that is as wide and broad as possible is inherent in the ethos of Walking with Micah.
Please use as the starting point for your designs one of the themes of the recent national Walking with Micah consultation led by Rachel Lampard as follows:
What do these, and a striving for justice in any other way that is important to you, mean for your church, circuit, banner group, coffee and craft, house group, friends or Messy Church?
Examples of these will be added to this page over time.
We are really looking forward to the impact that the finished work will have. But the heart of this project is thinking and discussion among the participants and the meaning of the concept of justice seeking in the lives of individuals, churches and associated groups. We would like to keep a record of the thoughts, concerns, dilemmas and choices made by each group. Anne Hollows would like to compile these into an accompanying document. This would of course be anonymised to preserve confidentiality. There are different ways of recording this process, but the most straightforward approach would be for the contact person to keep some notes that could be shared with Anne. Any other suggestions, such as recording discussions on phones, or even video, would be helpful too.
Please can each group notify Katrin Hackett at the District Office (email@example.com / 0114 270 9990) stating who the group represents (e.g. a church, a circuit, or another group), contact details for a representative of your group, how many squares you intend to make, and if possible what themes you expect to illustrate. Please do this by Monday 6 February if at all possible. This will allow us to start planning for the overall size of the final quilt and understand if there are any under-represented communities across the district.
Your completed blocks MUST be sent to Sheffield Methodist District Office, Room 47, Victoria Hall Methodist Church, Norfolk Street, Sheffield, S1 2JB by Friday 10 March.
The assembled quilt will be presented at the District Gathering on Saturday 22 April at Victoria Hall.
The material for the block should be BLUE and a reasonably firm fabric e.g. denim. The finished quilt will be displayed hanging, so your fabric needs to be sufficiently strong to carry the weight of your design.
Each block must be cut to 11 inches (28 cm) square, with the finished design contained within 9 inches (23 cm) square. This leaves us a one inch border to sew the blocks together.
If you are using collage which is any way bulky, e.g. buttons, try to place these at least half and inch from the edge of the design, i.e. the 9 inch line.
You can decorate your square using any techniques you are comfortable with, e.g. embroidery, fabric collage/ applique, painted fabric, attaching buttons or other trimmings. We hope you are able to use recycled materials or offcuts for the majority of your design.
We advise not painting directly onto the background material, as this may crack when we assemble the quilt. If you use fabric adhesive – bondaweb or spray – we suggest adding some securing stitches.
Anne Hollows is collecting various resources you can use to construct your square if you do not have any locally.
We need volunteers to help with the assembly, sewing together and backing of the completed square.
You can download the technical details here: Justice Quilt details