Passage quilts help families cope with loss
The loss of a loved one is a difficult time for a family. Actions that people take to express support helps a family cope with their loss.
The Passage Quilt program at Legacy Mount Hood provides a tangible gesture of care that honors a patient’s passing and helps families in their time of mourning. “Giving the family a quilt for their beloved is a beautiful way to honor them and help the family deal with their experience of death and support their healing process,” said Mount Hood Medical Center's chaplain Alice Tate.
Sometimes the family chooses the quilt. More often, the chaplain and hospital staff select a quilt based on their experiences with the patient and their family. “I've seen nurses quietly ask for spiritual guidance to choose the right quilt for the patient,” said nurse manager Tresa Clemmer. “Family members often say that the quilt is just perfect.”
The passage quilts are designed and handmade by volunteers from the hospital and community. Carla Liepold, R.N. at Legacy Mount Hood is among a group of six women who have made the passage quilts for 10 years. “Making the quilts is a meaningful way to comfort a grieving family and to share my love for quilting,” said Liepold.
Liepold spends time blessing each finished quilt. “I say prayers of kindness and peace and ask that the quilt will bring comfort to the family after the death of their loved one,” she said.
The quilts measure 40” x 60” and the sewing group produces about 25 quilts each month. The quilts are made with fabric donated by businesses and friends and from material leftover from personal projects. Donations of cotton fabric are welcome. Contact Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center at 503-674-1122 about making a fabric donation for the passage quilts.