Our congregation has a prayer shawl ministry. These are not shawls to pray in but shawls that have been prayed over while they are being made. Some of the ministers like to knit them and some like to crochet them. I like to crochet, and I'm pretty fast and prolific.
The recipients of these shawls vary from nursing home residents to hospital patients to cancer patients to retreat participants. Any one that needs to know they are being prayed for is eligible to receive one.
I can make one of these in about an hour. It is fun to use up little bits of yarn that I have had left over from other projects. It seems like the more colorful I can make them, the better they like them. They are not for warmth, just for color and symbolism. I have made dozens of them, and it is something I love to do.
We have a team that teaches in discipleship schools in other countries. Some of the countries they teach in are hostile to the gospel. Our group of stitchers started making scarves to give to each one of the students. The team explains to the students that in liturgical traditions a stole is presented to a pastoral candidate when he/she has finished his theological education and is being ordained to serve as a pastor of a church. It has implications of being yoked with Christ. You have to be ordained to be able to wear a stole. By giving the students one of these "prayer scarves", it is a way for them to feel like they have been separated out for the path that they have chosen in ministry. It is also something they can wear as a vestment and not look religious.