The fabric exchange was first conceived by Pastor Mary Pauluk, chaplain at St. John Lutheran Home in Springfield, MN, for the Interfaith Service at the American Association of Homes & Services For The Aging annual convention in Orlando, FL in October 2007. The Alzheimer's: Forgetting Piece by Piece exhibit was on display.
Together we spoke these words that Mary wrote:
We gather today as a diverse body of people
from many faiths and traditions.
We do not utter the same prayers,
nor do we even use the same word,
if any word at all, to speak the name of God.
Nevertheless, we gather together in prayer.
In our gathering, we honor and celebrate our diversity.
We do not seek a unity that would deny our differences.
We seek rather a deeper union,
a union quilted through choice and intent,
through time and attention, through respect and compassion,
until we recognize that we have become a whole cloth,
made rich and textured and vibrant through our differences.
We are quilted together.
We are bound to one another.
We belong to and with each other.