February 15, 2003
Dear Family and Friends,
Sophia is now 24 months old, having struggled valiantly
all of her life with Niemann-Pick Disease, Type A. Although
our integrative medicine efforts have increased the quality
of Sophia's life, she continues to decline from the disease
and a cure has not yet been found.
At this time, we wish to celebrate Sophia’s
life with a Prayer Flag Project. Our friend and neighbor in
Greenmeadow, Robin Modlin, a textile and mosaic artist and
mother of a special needs young adult, developed this project
during her Chaplain residency at Lucile Salter Packard Children's
Hospital at Stanford (more about prayer flags below). Together
we have initiated the Prayer Flag Project as an expression
of love and support for Sophia.
We invite you to participate in honoring Sophia by creating
a prayer flag. If you live nearby, drop over to our house and
create one with supplies donated by the Modlins. If you are out-of-town,
make one and either hang it in your home or send it to Sophia
for display throughout ours (contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for delivery instructions).
The collage flags are 15 1/2" L x 11" W with a 2 1/2" "waistband" at
the top. They can be created out of fabric or paper and adorned
with beads, fabric, leather, paper, photos, sequins, glitter,
feathers, fabric, acrylic or oil paint, magic markers, found
objects such as stones, leaves and flowers (see
Let your imagination blossom and your heart soar as you make
your wish for Sophia and her incredible journey.
Thank you with all of our hearts for the outpouring of kindness,
generosity and love for our precious Sophia. We hope your lives
are as enriched and deepened as ours from her gentle, soulful
With deepest gratitude,
Karen, Richard, Lauren and Sophia
About Prayer Flags
by Robin Modlin
Traditional Tibetan Buddhist Prayer Flags are inscribed with
symbols, prayers and mantras. Tibetan Buddhists for centuries
have planted these flags outside their homes and places of spiritual
practice for the wind to carry their beneficent vibrations across
the countryside. Prayer flags are saidto bring joy and prosperity
to the flag planter and those in the vicinity. They invoke wisdom,
compassion and strength while protecting against danger and negative
Inspired by the traditional flags, Prayer Flags for healing
provide a unique opportunity to participate in supporting patients
and their families who are in crisis. The flags offer patients,
family members and friends a way to express their heartfelt thoughts
and prayers whatever spiritual or faith tradition they come from.
Making a prayer flag for a patient allows the friend or family
member a way to share feelings of love and support that may be
hard to say any other way.
Hanging the flags in the environment of the patient offers a
feeling of hope, love, support and a closenss to their community
of caring. The beauty of the flags uplifts the heart of those
who are emotionally struggling and gives those who see the display
an opportunity to reflect upon their own feelings while gaining
an understanding of how others are coping.
Using creativity when dealing with disease
can help to unlock hidden emotions and provide a safe way to
share one’s concerns.
It gives a sense of doing something in situations where many
times one feels helpless.You do not need to be a great artist
to create a prayer flag. It only requires opening your heart
and the willingness to share your love and care. The result is
a personal statement of caring that can easily be received. Prayer
flags are good medicine for everyone concerned