Here in Combermere and in our mission houses as well, our outside doors are painted blue. Why? In Pre-Revolutionary Russia, the home of our foundress, Catherine Doherty, it was believed that, "every door painted blue in honor of Our lady brings her blessing on all who pass through."
We are happy to be a place where Our Lady can do this to her heart’s content.
And while she does this, we attend to the ordinary tasks of every family: providing food, washing clothes, communicating with one another, fixing broken things, praying and learning together, caring for the sick and of course much more. Thank you for your donations which enable us to do these things.
After a busy season with families at our Cana Colony, we have learned that next year we will need bread boxes that close securely. Chipmunks have been getting into the ones we have. We will also need a few sets of UNO card games.
Our main kitchen needs a 100-cup coffee urn for Sundays and feast days. (The rest of the time, we drink tea.) And also 4 liter size stackable plastic containers with lids.
Head gardener Mary Davis is preparing to harvest apples, and she is wondering if anybody can send her some needed garden supplies: bonemeal, bloodmeal, leaf rakes, and apple-size plastic balls (Wiffle balls are perfect), which she paints red and uses as apple maggot traps.
Our gift shop is still open fulltime and is earning funds to support missionaries who work with the poor in several different countries. We remind you that that shop is stocked with donations from our benefactors.
These days the shop keepers are especially asking for natural stone jewelry and bracelets of any kind, particularly charm bracelets. They are also asking for religious medals of saints.
The food processing crew is in dire need of plastic aprons for their helpers. They can be either polyethylene-coated polypropylene, Dupont Tyvek, or the disposable polyethylene kind.
They can’t use vinyl or PVC aprons as they are too heavy and hot for working around large quantities of boiling hot food. The size apron they need is a standard one: 24" wide x 46" long or close to it.
The office staff are happy for the Scotch tape you sent. Thank you!
Their current needs are the usual ones: any office letterhead paper you are discarding (we can cut off the letterheads), good-on-one-side computer paper, desktop tape dispensers, and White-Out. (Yes, though we use computers for some things, we are still using typewriters as well.)
The Restoration office needs 9x12 kraft or poly/paper envelopes for mailing out bulk orders. We can cover old return addresses.
St. Raphael’s Handicraft Center needs a few things for their many projects. These needs include non-adhesive, 1-inch Velcro for sewing on curtains, size 12 to 14 plain sewing machine needles, and wet oasis floral foam blocks. And because they make many displays honoring Our Lady, they would appreciate craft paper in medium blue shades.
One thing that several departments use is JT-21 staples for staple guns. These are invaluable for labeling boxes when we sort donations.
Our nurses are very grateful for the large binder which someone donated and which they are using it for a special project.
Here are their current needs: cough drops with sugar (some people can’t take aspartame), Benadryl (stick or cream) for insect bites, and a small refrigerator for meds that need refrigeration. Approximately 24" wide and 60" tall would be good.
In September the farmers will be busy harvesting vegetables. They are asking for a portable air tank (25L or 5 gal.) and a 1-gallon (4L) oil can with a spout.
We consider ourselves truly blessed that you, our friends, are interested in hearing what our needs are and that you respond so generously. Know that we are praying for you every day at our liturgies.
In Our Lady of Combermere,
Susanne Stubbs and Mark Schlingerman (September 2011)
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