CullmanTimes.com - Cullman, Alabama

November 29, 2012

‘Knit-Wit’ group offers their talents to aid those in need


Sacred Heart Church

CULLMAN — Members of a local knitting group, the “Knit-Wits,” accomplished a major goal recently when they completed their 200th knitted hat in only five months! 

Several members of the group are residents of Benedictine Manor, a retirement facility located on the grounds of Sacred Heart Monastery in Cullman. The knitters meet each Tuesday afternoon from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Manor with local women joining in as well. 

While they usually knitted items for themselves, families and friends, they determined they wanted to make something useful for others less fortunate. Five months ago they began their Anna’s Place Mission project. Anna’s Place, located in Chester, Pa., is run by the Sisters of St. Frances of Philadelphia. Their mission feeds over 100 folks a day, they care for children after school hours and in general look out for the welfare of some of the city’s poorest.

The seven knitters started their project from scratch, using any and all yarn and knitting goods they could locate, accepting donations gratefully. In addition to the hats, which are formed on a loom, they made scarves of glorious colors and doll clothes! 

Anne Oakes of Vinemont found numerous old dolls and plush toys in various locations. She washed them, cleaned them and then the Knit-Witters had fun playing “dress up” with the baby dolls!

Sister Barbara Gallagher, O.S.F, noted that any mistakes made could be fixed easily or covered up, in order to ease the minds of new knitters who joined the project! Their first batch started at 25 hats and caps, but as they quickly learned how to use the head looms, they kept on making and making and making. 

Since Sister Barbara was heading to Pennsylvania for a religious conference, she was entrusted with the task of delivering the “goodies.” By the time she was ready to head north, her car was stuffed with 200 hats and caps for children, men and women, scarves, 40 dolls dressed to the “nines”, countless bears and monkeys and other lovable creatures.

Knit-Wit group members achieved their goal of helping children and adults who would receive the fruits of their labor as well as benefit from a bit of extra warmth this winter. Plans are to organize another support program next year; they welcome all help.

With their project completed, the knitters began to prepare Christmas gifts for their own families and loved ones. Everyone is invited to attend their weekly knitting session each Tuesday afternoon at Benedictine Manor.