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Thank you for making amazing experiences possible

Thank you to all who support the Sisters of Providence so people from all over the world can have meaningful experiences at a USDA certified organic farm in Indiana.  I stopped by the orchard and the garden yesterday to get a few pictures that might give you a glimpse of the day-to-day on the farm.

The White Violet Center for Eco-Justice team is made up of staff (full-time and seasonal), interns, volunteers, and Sisters of Providence. There are currently five interns, with a sixth arriving this weekend. The many volunteers who give their time to help provide local food to the community is amazing.

Early in the day on Tuesday, apples were harvested for the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) members, and to be sold in the farm store at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods and at the Terre Haute Downtown Farmers’ Market.

Intern Hannah Goodno uses a fruit picker to get the apples up high. Hannah, of Philadelphia, has an international studies degree from the University of Wisconsin.

It’s probably easy to see that Emily TeKolste, Sisters of Providence novice, is enjoying getting in on the action of harvesting apples. Doesn’t she look like she’s up to something?

In the orchard at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods Tuesday morning from left, are Sister Emily TeKolste, Carina Hunneshagen (intern), Virginia Cheij (intern), Candace Minster (garden manager), and Hannah Goodno (intern). Look at all those yummy apples.

Then a couple hours after that, most of the garden crew was found digging in rows and rows of dry dirt for potatoes. The dust was flying.

Farm Projects Coordinator David Illyes takes a pass with the tractor to loosen the soil as Farm Projects Assistant Ann Testa and garden crew member Erin Barnett follow behind.

Crystal Hart, of Boulder, Colorado, shows some of the spuds she helped harvest. Crystal is a massage therapist.  I wonder if the other interns know that yet?!

Standing between rows of potatoes, are Erin Barnett, Cassidy Yates, Carina Hunneshagen, Hory Chikez, David Illyes, Liv Charlton, Virginia Cheij, Hannah Goodno, Crystal Hart, and Ann Testa. Hory lives in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and is volunteering at White Violet Center on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in September. Cassidy is a summer garden worker and a recent graduate of West Vigo High School. Virginia is from Nashville, Tennessee. Liv is from Des Moines, Iowa.

If you’re in the Terre Haute area, there are still a few fall CSA vegetable shares available. The season begins Oct. 11 and ends Nov. 29. Click the link for more details and online registration.

Hopefully you enjoyed that peek into a Tuesday morning at this busy ministry. Comment below if these photos of harvesting apples and potatoes have brought back any memories for you.

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Cheryl Casselman

Cheryl Casselman worked as a marketing manager for the Sisters of Providence for twenty years. She grew up in Camby, Indiana and now lives in Sullivan County, Indiana. She has a bachelor's degree in communications from Indiana State University and master's degree in Leadership Development from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College.

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  1. Avatar Marilyn Kofler, SP on September 13, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Dressed in the full habit worn by SP novices in 1953-54, I remember spending a noon recreation hour picking strawberries in the rain! Serge skirts pinned up, veils pinned back, umbrella in one hand, harvesting yummy strawberries with the other hand would have provided an interesting vocation video! I thought (naïve novice though I was) the Sisters and novitiate would enjoy the fruit of our labors…..NOT! The luscious strawberries found their way to the tables of priests who were on their annual retreat at the Woods!

    • Avatar Cheryl Casselman on September 15, 2017 at 3:44 pm

      Oh, boy! Talk about multi-tasking! Thanks for sharing your memory, Sister Marilyn!

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