Starting as a priest in a new parish always has its challenges, but starting at a new parish during a pandemic is particularly difficult. The Rev. Mary Trainor began serving at St. Francis, Menomonee Falls just as the coronavirus hit causing St. Francis to begin worshipping online. She is certainly adjusting to practicing ministry with the people of St. Francis remotely and getting to know members and the community in a whole new way.
In her spare time, Pastor Mary enjoys quilting. During this time when we're all spending more time at home, Pastor Mary has begun quilting orange stoles, much like the stole that Bishop Miller wears during the online diocesan worship services. Like Bishop Miller's stole, Pastor Mary is creating her stoles as a witness against gun violence. So far, she has made four stoles for clergy in three churches. She makes them with beautiful scraps of cotton quilting fabric. She sees making quilts from scraps both as an act of prayer and stewardship. Inside two of the stoles are white fabric with scripture verses. Each stole is unique and reversible; she designs them herself. Pastor Mary does both hand and machine quilting, and she prays as she crafts the stoles. She also appreciates that the unique color of the stole — orange — brings questions from congregation members, providing an opportunity to witness against gun violence.