Needles, thread and a deadly war.

A muse …

I have been thinking about my Grandfather this week. He is my Dad’s father. He barely spoke English often switching to Italian in the middle of a sentence. Always had pay close attention to his rapid Italian speech.

He was born in 1902 in Calabria Italy and came to America through Ellis Island in NY as a teenager.

I am reminded of him this week as I pick up masks from seamstresses all over our city for health professionals at our non-profit. I remember a story he told me when I was a young boy. Half in English and half in Italian as I looked to my Mom to interpret what I couldn’t understand.

He was a tailor in WWI. He shared he would move with the soldiers from region to region sewing and repairing uniforms. Essential I imagine, a basic needs for survival. He said: “It was a horrific memory, Giovanni.” He said, “I remember running from tent to tent with my sewing machine under my arm as bombs flew overhead.” “The worst part was feeling the crunch of those we lost to the war under my feet. As he clenched his teeth on his hand, as Italians do out of disgust. He didn’t like to talk about that war.

I’m reminded of him as I drive around the city to get masks for our health care workers at our non-profit clinic. These heroes are also on the frontline of a war. A war on a deadly virus. Seamstresses all around the city making masks as Grandpa made uniforms for the soldiers of the war.


Published by John Chianelli, Writer

I am second. I will share my experiences, as a child of God, husband to Daniel, father, best friend, brother, son, leader, professor, writer and photographer. My intention for this blog is to be random, with no plan, no list, no direction and no expectations. Very different from how I lived my past life. My journey has been blessed by the mercy and grace of God and unwavering love. I hope you enjoy reading and sharing my experiences of hurts, laughter, discovery, friendships, Christ, and my family. Temenos is a safe circle where you can be yourself with peace of mind. Temenos originates from a Greek word which refers to a universal instinct to create a protected, safe space in which to heal, restore and regenerate yourself. My temenos circle is a place to be still and seek Jesus. It becomes my place to pray, reflect in the word of our Lord to shrink, grow in him, and heal my soul. What is your temenos circle? By: John Chianelli ©John Chianelli and Temenos Circle. 2016-2011. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog's author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided the full and clear credit is given to John Chianelli and Temenos Circle with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

5 thoughts on “Needles, thread and a deadly war.

  1. Thanks John…I always look forward to reading your post! Hope all is well with you and your family🤗


  2. Hi John, It has been awhile since I received your Temenos Circle. Enjoyed reading about your grandfather. If he was alive that would make him 118 years old. In biblical times Christian prophets lived longer than that. Peace, John

    Sent from my iPhone



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