I’m not sure where else to post this (for the first time, I’m stumped!), so I apologize if this isn’t the best spot. There is a local Discalced Carmelite convent in my current community and while they accept prayer requests, I’m actually wondering if there’s anything my family can do to help and support them. Does anyone have any experience with this sort of thing? In my hometown, my family supported the Carmelites by donating useful items to them and I’ll write to this order to see if this would help them, too. But I’m wondering if anyone here has any other ideas?
From my experience, apart from monetary donations and useful items, some also accept food (such as canned food or home-cooked) ~ but u should ask them first if it’s ok. It is also possible, if they are in the process of expanding/rebuilding/cleaning up their monastery, that they could ask for outside assistance on this, so u can ask about this. Also, you can also offer services for them like if they have any problems with their monastery such as electrical issues, u can offer to let them know of a trustworthy electrician in the area whom they can call that’s close-by.
And lastly, u can support them with your prayers! They need a lot of it!
It would seem to me that they know their needs better than anyone else… so why not ask them what they need?
I know the one I live near uses volunteers to answer the door at times. I think if you stop by, ask what sorts of things you can give or even volunteer for. I just love that order.
I have some experience with the nuns and offer these thoughts. Yes, ask them. Feel free to stop in to speak with them. There are certain necessities that everyone needs (cleaning supplies, personal care items, food, etc.) but you never know what they might really need until you ask. Also, it might be helpful to offer to be a person who can go out an buy items they need (which they would pay for) or deliver things from them to someone else. Or, see if they need some men to do strenuous jobs that are, frankly, beyond their physical ability. Always keep in mind that they are cloistered. So, offering to be a connection to the outside world might be welcome.
Usually, these communities are quite well-connected and have a strong network of support. So, maybe they won’t need anything at the moment. Don’t be afraid to go back later, in that case, and ask again.
ask them if they need vocational promotion, as well. i distributed flyers for one carmel, and they started getting inquiries from girls who said they never knew they existed. may want to do this for other local convents, too.
as for the other posters, i agree with them.
Thanks so much, everyone!