Two years ago, Peace Lutheran Church in Hutchinson collected more than 300 pairs of shoes to send to Haiti after an earthquake left many families there with nothing. The shoes were sent to Haiti through the Orphan Grain Train. This month, the church is sending another shipment on the train, and it will help the girls of Haiti.
“We have collected pillowcases from the congregation and have made dresses from those pillowcases,” said Marlys Palmer, director of Parish Services at Peace Lutheran.
At a committee meeting a couple of years ago, the Rev. John Pasche, associate pastor at Peace Lutheran, brought up the idea of pillowcase dresses for the girls of Haiti.
“We decided to try it. We got a pattern and some ladies started to make dressses,” said Palmer. “We now have 67 dresses made ,and they are ready to be shipped. Some of the dresses are really pretty, and some are very unique with pockets and ribbons.”
Nona Anderson, of Hutchinson, was moved by the program and took it upon herself to make 31 of the 67 dresses.
“I feel like the Lord spoke to me,” said Anderson. “I was getting thoughts in my head, and I felt like I needed to pay attention to those thoughts. I believe it was the Lord speaking to me.”
Nona said once she got going, she could make three or four dresses in about an hour.
The dresses will be shipped down to Haiti this month.
Pasche said the development of the Orphan Grain Train dates back to when Eastern Russia was opened up and there was a big need for food in that region of the world.
“It was the vision of the midwestern farmers to bring grain to Russia,” he said.
Over the years, the amount of grain needed in that area has diminished, but that hasn’t stopped the Orphan Grain Train, which now brings food, clothing, shoes, quilts, hospital equipment and more all around the world.
Pasche’s father, Eugene Pasche of Morris, has been a longtime supporter of the Orphan Grain Train, and he will be helping to prepare the shipment of dresses and other items from other congregations in Minnesota. If you are interested in donating pillowcase dresses, or you have clothing or shoes that you would like to donate to the Orphan Grain Train, contact Eugene Pasche at 320-589-2796.