Handmade rosaries by mothers of children with Down Syndrome from Guatemala. The mothers formed their own "cooperative" to make the crafts they sell to raise funds for their children's medical care.
Your purchase of these handmade rosaries, pouches, bags and other crafts from Hermanos Down will help support their mission to care for their children.
A note from the Saint Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology on how they discovered Hermanos Down and what they are doing to help their mission:
In January 2023, Saint Meinrad seminarians in 2nd Theology made a pilgrimage to Guatemala to visit Santiago Atitlán, the site of the martyrdom of Blessed Stanley Rother, a diocesan priest from Oklahoma, turned missionary who was martyred in his own rectory on the night of July 28, 1981.
It was during this pilgrimage that the seminarians crossed Lake Atitlán to visit a small shop in the town of San Juan. This shop is called Hermanos Down, an artisan shop that sells Guatemalan crafts handmade by mothers of children with Down Syndrome. While there, we met Wendy, a 27-year-old girl, and her younger brother, both with Down Syndrome. The boy is now blind because of the difficulty in receiving adequate medical care. Both children are from a single family.
The parents of all the children are poor and with little or no education, yet they strive to find adequate medical care for their children with Down Syndrome. The only medical service available for them is a 5–6-hour bus ride to Guatemala City. This trip is hard to make because of the trip's expense, the housing in Guatemala City for the duration of the medical visit, and the expensive medicine prescribed. The mothers formed their own "cooperative" to make the crafts they sell to raise funds for their children's medical care.
Moved by their situation, we explored ways to help them, and selling their handmade crafts here at Saint Meinrad Archabbey Gift Shop is one of our efforts. After our recent purchases while there, the families could buy costly medicine for the children. This group photo was taken of the II Theology seminarians with the two children and their parents during the pilgrimage.
We, and the families, thank you for your purchases and collaboration in helping these children. We pray for you, as most certainly do the families as well.
God bless, and thank you.
Fr. James Schimelpfening, SM
Saint Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology