“A time to tear apart and a time to sew together.”
For Silvana Roccisano, the Family Educator at Holy Spirit Catholic Primary School in Carnes Hill, the words from Ecclesiastes 3:7 were a call to action amid the pandemic, calling her to create a “Sewn With Love” initiative.
“I asked God what I can do during this pandemic and that’s when I came across that verse,”she said.
Teaming up with other parishioners and parents at the school, Silvana is using the homemade facemasks as a clever way to sew the community back together.
“In response to the recommendations of face masks during Mass, I am coordinating parishioners to sew masks to give to people before Mass,” she said.
Silvana hopes that the masks, which are being handed out free to all parishioners, will help unite the parish in these tough times, reaching out to disconnected parishioners and reminding everyone that they’re in this together.
Sewn together by a group of 10 parishioners, the masks were then washed and sanitised, and placed in zip lock bags to keep them germ-free before they were placed at the back of the church and handed out to parishioners.
“I spoke to Fr Joseph our parish priest and he was very supportive and said quite simply ‘go for it,” she said.
“He told the congregation that it was time for all of us to roll up our sleeves and help out however we can.
“It was God who gave me this idea. God is depending on us to do what we can just as we are depending on God to get us through this time.”
Silvana hopes the initiative will help reunite parishioners feeling isolated by social distancing restrictions while reminding everyone that there are people who are struggling and need help.
“Giving them out for free to everyone is a reminder that we are all in this together,” said Silvana.
“We want everyone to know we’re on common sewn together as one.
“This is a wonderful gift that God has given me and a wonderful journey He has put me on.
“He brought me 10 wonderful sewers from the parish and school community and we’re all so grateful they answered the call.”
The finished masks were given to parishioners at Mass at Carnes Hill last weekend but the sewing crew plans to continue stitching.
The community hopes that their initiative will inspire other parishes to do the same and help keep churches open during the pandemic.