Last month, a brutal heat wave smothered the town where we care for 22 elderly and disabled Marist Brothers. Except for short walks to the home’s adjacent Chapel, the oppressive temperatures kept every elderly Brother indoors and close to the window air conditioning units.
On a particularly sweltering afternoon, our Brothers gathered for lunch in the dining room – and despite the nutritious spread no one seemed particularly interested in eating. It felt hotter inside than outside.
It turned out that one of the two large capacity window air conditioners that cool the enormous dining room had conked out. Two AC units? Absolutely! The dining room is 748 square feet, measuring a full 22-feet wide by 34-feet long!
With only one unit to cool such a large room, crisp lunch salads wilted. Iced tea turned lukewarm. And sherbet desserts were more like goopy soup by the third spoonful!
We did call a repairman, but he found that the window AC unit’s compressor was broken – and since the unit was already 14 years old, he felt a fix was wasting money. He urged us to purchase a new unit, which we immediately did. Our total expense came to a little more than $4,500. That included hauling off the old junky unit, reframing the window, and installing the new unit.
Today I turn to you, one of our most valued Marist Brothers’ friends, and ask for your financial support.
I hope you understand that the $4,500 was an essential expense. And I pray you’ll show your support by sending a gift today.
I assure you…a second large capacity window air conditioning unit in a room this size was a necessity! Elderly adults are more affected by environmental heat! For one, seniors tend to sweat less, which makes it tough to regulate the body’s internal temperature. That can trigger dangerous heat-related illnesses, such as heat stroke, cramps, swelling, and fainting.
Poor nutrition is another concern. No one – young or senior – has much of an appetite when oppressive temperatures soar beyond 90.
Your gift – in whatever amount you can afford – will help us cover this unexpected expense and “cool down” the budget woes we’re facing.
Watching my Brothers gather around the dining room table, enjoying the room’s comforting coolness, is such a blessing. The mere sight of everyone relishing a meal all together is proof enough that the new AC unit was a smart decision!
You may have noticed the two nickels tucked in with my letter. It’s my way of reminding you hat every nickel counts! Whether you send $15 or $50, your gift will matter. Nickel by nickel, I have faith that we will raise the $4,500 to cover the new window air conditioning unit.
The very day your gift arrives, the Brothers and I will want to thank God for your generosity. So please remember to write your prayer intentions on the enclosed donation response slip and return it to me along with your support. As we offer our gratitude up to God, we’ll include your intentions in our prayers, for you and your loved ones.
I hope you’re enjoying a beautiful summer – not too hot, not too humid, just right! And to close my note, I thank you again for always being here for the Marist Brothers.
God bless you for your kind generosity,
Br. Hugh P. Turley, F.M.S.
Director of Development