Friday, May 27, 2016

Who Knew Quilting Could Be So Contentious!

Picture Book: Luka’s Quilt
Author & Illustrator: Georgia Guback
Original Publisher & Date: Greenwillow Books, 1994
Summary: Luka and her Tutu (grandmother in Hawaiian) are very close. Luka is delighted to learn that they will be making a traditional Hawaiian quilt for Luka’s bed and is assured it will have loads of flowers on it.
Luka loves the many colors of flowers so she is puzzled when they purchase only one color for the quilt. Eventually Luka realizes that the green she has chosen (she thought it would be the leaves for the many colorful flowers) is to be the background for a silhouette of white flowers. 
Luka declares, “It can’t be a flower garden if the flowers are white.” Tears flow, and their relationship is damaged for a time. Eventually Tutu calls for a truce and takes Luka to Lei Day. As before, Tutu expects Luka to make a traditional lei with only 2 flower colors, but Luka refuses and uses many colored flowers in her Hawaiian necklace. 
Luka’s lei inspires Tutu so that together they begin sewing a compromise. The result is a beautiful quilt that is both traditional and Luka-approved.   
Luka sleeps under the quilt with or without the lei overlay and is very happy their relationship is restored.  
Hanna’s Comments: I appreciate this story for lots of reasons. First, it deals sensitively with the subject of different preferences and the hurt feelings and anger that can result. Secondly, it offers some information about Hawaii that I appreciated learning. The rich sensory and cultural details offer many possibilities for supplemental activities. 
Lastly, it is, at its heart, a story of love between 2 family members. Human nature reveals that the ones we love the most, hurt us most. Explore that idea and God’s desire that we be in loving and respectful relationships, particularly with those we love most.  
Idea(s) for Application: Consider reading this book at a retreat for a church who has been struggling with issues of worship style. It beautifully illustrates the dichotomy of tradition vs. new ideas in a context that will translate well to a congregation. Be sure to emphasize the value of loving relationships and be respectful and sensitive to all perspectives. Keep coming back to your overall purpose which I think you’ll agree is in the scripture connection I offer next.
Scripture Connections: Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. (Colossians 3:14)
Age & Grade Appropriateness: 4 and up, Pre and up
Formats other than Book: None at present

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