Luminaria Bag: Crafting with a Cause

This past weekend I had the opportunity to participate in the Out Of The Darkness Walk for the prevention and awareness of suicide. It was hosted by the American Foundation for the Prevention of Suicide.  My Aunt lost my Uncle to suicide one year ago, she has gone through the first year of reconstructing her life and surviving.

The Walk is an 18 mile over night event (!) The opening ceremony was at 7 pm, and the closing ceremony was at 5:00 am, with 18 miles in between!
The team
Here is our team, assembled for the opening ceremony.

Our registration packages contained a Luminary bag.  The idea was that you would decorate your bag in commemoration of who you are walking for. Unfortunately, we did not get our package ahead of time. My Aunt did, and spent a lot of time and put a lot of effort into her bag. She found beautiful pictures and meaningful quotes and poems. Her bag was actually lovely. And she would be the first to say that she is not “super crafty”.

We did not get our bag until the afternoon of the event. So, in preparation, Amelia and I brought along some supplies so that we could do our project in the hotel room.
Glitter is heavily featured. Of course. Along with stickers.

At the end of the walk, as we entered the field, the bags were set up lining the finish.
We never found our glitter bag, and that was okay. But we found the bag that Vicki made for Paul, and that is what mattered.
Paul's bag
There were more than 2000 bags, making a dramatic pathway.
luminary bags
Vicki spent a quiet moment, and spoke to Paul privately.

Honestly, this was one of the most moving “craft projects” I have ever witnessed.


And here we are, hobbling under the finish arch. It was an amazing event, and a wonderful weekend.

Hold your family and loved ones tight. And may all your crafting take on powers far beyond the “sum of the parts”.

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© 2005 – 2012 Kathy Lewinski & Susan Cornish


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One Comment to Luminaria Bag: Crafting with a Cause
    • Sally Anderson
    • What a terrific event. Congratulations on accomplishing the whole walk. My daughter (adopted) has had suicides in her life that she’s now writing about at this blog: Maybe it could help you or your aunt in some ways. My sympathies go to your family for the sadness this has caused and for your uncle’s pain. Someone once said the most painful disease is depression — it cause people to prefer to die than to suffer it. I hope you all heal smoothly and quickly!

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