Last month I wrote to you about our new Marist Brothers’ retirement facility. I mentioned how fortunate we were to have this space…since we’ve nearly outgrown our existing facilities. I also shared how perfect the location is! It’s the 4th floor in one of our very own Marist Brothers’ high schools, which means that Brothers planning to soon retire from the classroom can move “upstairs” and remain in the community they’ve come to love.
From the start, we knew that the space, once a Monastery residence for Brothers, needed serious updating – since it hadn’t been touched in more than 40 years. But the positives were so strong that we pushed ahead.
Unfortunately, the space needed more updating than we imagined. Runaway renovation costs devoured our budget.
The bathrooms alone put us $16,000 over budget. After our contractor pulled down ceilings and opened up crumbling walls, he found rotting, rusted plumbing pipes, unflushable toilets, and creeping, out-of-control mold everywhere. Our plan to transform the original dilapidated, dormitory-style bathroom into three, handicapped-accessible, private bathrooms went from a renovation to a complete gut job. We had to start from scratch!
I’m not sure how we’ll manage without your gift.
And the invoices keep coming! Now that we’ve rebuilt the entire area and created three private bathrooms, we need to install handicapped-accessible bathroom fixtures and grab bars in and around the tubs. After all, what good is a bathroom if our less agile and wheelchair-bound Brothers can’t reach the sink and toilet or safely take a bath?
Your gift – even if you can only afford $25 – will be a blessing. Can we count on your help this Easter season?
In addition to bathroom essentials, the Brothers’ physicians strongly urged us to install at least one therapeutic whirlpool tub – to help reduce the arthritic pain that many of our elderly Brothers suffer.
Our elderly and disabled Brothers’ nurse also had recommendations. For example, she insisted that we install non-slip flooring throughout each of the three bathrooms. Without it, she stressed, we were asking for an accident. And she held firm on curbless-showers, which have a smooth threshold to eliminate any risky steps into or out of the shower.
Your support will help us provide our elderly and disabled Brothers with the independence and safety they deserve.
I cannot stress enough how much every gift matters. Consider the two nickels tucked in with my letter. Alone we’re talking loose change – enough to jingle in your pocket. But when you add your two “nickels” we now have 20¢. In the same way, if every Marist Brothers’ friend sends what they can afford, the sum total keeps doubling – until we have the full $16,000 needed.
While the $16,000 pushed us beyond our anticipated budget, I hope you understand that every expense was essential. I pray you agree and will show your support by sending a gift today.
As soon as your gift arrives, the Brothers and I will want to thank God for your generosity. So please, take a moment to complete the enclosed prayer intention slip and send it along with your donation. The Brothers and I will include your prayer intentions during a special Easter Mass that will be offered in honor of you and your loved ones.
In the meantime, may the grace and glory of the Lord surround you and be with you this Holy Easter.
Br. Hugh P. Turley, F.M.S.
Director of Development