The Loewen family has been quilting for over 40 years. From a young age, Beth Loewen enjoyed sewing and quilting for herself, especially in the wintertime. When she grew up and formed a family of her own, Beth would spend many hours making quilts and clothing for her four children.
In the early 1970s, MCC Thrift in Calgary began sending clothing items that were not suitable for resale to Beth’s local church, Bergthal Mennonite, to be turned into beautiful quilts. Beth was inspired to help turn the clothing into quilt tops that would be then be donated to MCC. She was moved to use her talents to create quilts that would bring warmth and joy into the lives of those in need. In the winter months, Beth and her husband Abe would spend their time quilting together. Abe would cut clothing into squares and Beth would sow them into tops. Once Beth’s daughter-in-law Lorelei joined the family, she was also inspired to join the cause! Quilting quickly became a family affair with Lorelei’s daughter, Angela, later joining the team at the young age of 10.
Through the years, Lorelei continued to quilt with her daughter in the winter months making as many as 30 tops per winter. The Loewen’s believe we are all called to help others in any way we can. For them, making something that would provide warmth for someone who has nothing to keep them warm, motivated them to use their talent and passion for quilting as a way to give. For Angela, these homemade blankets bring physical and spiritual warmth to someone worlds away-- every stitch is sewn with love and prayer.
Today, Lorelei continues to bring her family into the tradition of quilting—even her grandchildren are carrying the baton! Keira and Devon have been making their own quilt tops since the young ages of four and five. Now at ages eleven and nine, they share the same joy for quilting and acts of giving that began with their great grandmother Beth.
Because of families like the Loewen’s, who have shared their talents to make quilts for distribution all around the world, MCC has been able to send almost 64,000 quilts in the last year! Learn more about how you can help give warmth and hope through making a kit or comforter: https://mcccanada.ca/get-involved/kits. Follow MCC on Facebook to stay updated on events where you can share your skills to make a difference!