Sometimes you are called to act. As I was passing by my daughter’s bedroom a few years ago, I was focused on her doll cabinet, filled with dolls that hadn’t been played with in years. I thought how sad it was that they sat there month after month, year after year with no one touching them or enjoying their beauty. It was then that I remembered the hundreds of refugees pouring into Germany and an idea was born. All these children arriving in the middle of the night, after treacherous journeys must be filled with lots of emotions and traumas after leaving their homelands. What joy it would be for them to have a small doll or stuffed animal greet them in this foreign country, now their new home – at least for a while. And so on December 6, 2015 at 9:00 in the morning, a church project began as parishioners brought boxes of toys to our hall to be sent to Passau, Germany. The city of Passau lies in southern Germany and migrants were arriving and crossing the border. I know that these donations of toys from my parish of Holy Name of Mary will brighten the faces of children who had to flee the violence of their homes and serve as a small welcome gift as they arrive in this new country.
Dec. 22, 2015 – Today we received word that our boxes have arrived and Frau Beate Heindl sent some photos of children with the stuffed animals. We are so thrilled to share the following photo.
July 13, 2020- So now it is five years later and a story called A TEA PARTY FAR AWAY has been born. This picture book will tell the story of Maddie, a second grader, who has to decide whether to donate her treasured possessions when her school asks the children for used toys to send to Syrian refugees. It has been edited and is now in the second stage of rewriting..