A Worthy Cause

Who gets to decide what is content worth posting? Content worth engaging?

Increasingly on, social media, it’s an algorithm. A computer program that matches your particular likes and follows with others who have similar likes and follows. But even more than that, it’s based on how much content you create. If you don’t feed the social media monster on a regular basis, it refuses to regurgitate what you post for others to see.

Normally, that wouldn’t bother me.

I’ve been increasingly silent on most platforms, uploading less photos, posting less words as I try to decide what my digital footprint should be. As I decide what the online legacy of my children should be.

But it bothers me today.

Because I have a worthy cause to share.

So, here I am. Again. Dusting off the ol’ blog to talk directly to you. My people that I can reach, un-filtered and un-sorted.

Hi. How are you? How have you been?

Can I tell you about this thing my sister Jessie and I are doing? Do you have a minute to listen? If not, not worries. I’ll catch you at a different time, with a different message. I respect that your time is valuable.

If you’re still here, read on. This is the message I’m trying to share. The content that, apparently, isn’t important enough to be seen by others…according to a computer.

What can we do in the face of tragedy, destruction, and suffering? If you’re my sister Jessie, contemplating the 2020 wildfire season, you draw. She found images that moved her to action, images that moved a nation, and she prayed her way through their re-creation in pastel.

Then she asked, she prayed: how can this help? How can this bring tangible good and healing?

And she got a response.

Not from herself.

Not from an organization.

From a friend.

The Slater fire destroyed more than 150 homes in Happy Camp, CA. It destroyed the All Saints Mission church. Residents are STILL reeling and rebuilding and recovering almost 6 months later.

“My mom can house a Happy Camp resident, we just need to make her RV livable again,” said this friend.

Well, Jessie and I aren’t restoration workers.

We’re not firefighters.

Our gifts don’t show up in counseling skills or as CA food bank volunteers.

But, we do have art.
And we do have $5.
And we do have friends.
And that, my friends, my helpers, is enough.

So, here’s the plan, dear ones:

Our goal: $600 to cover the cost of an RV repair

Purpose: Provide housing for one of the residents of Happy Camp, CA.

Instructions: Send a donation, of any amount, via paypal (catholiccurio (at) gmail.com) or Venmo (@ CaitElder). If you want to donate, but not through paypal or venmo, shoot me an email (caitlinelder25 (at) gmail.com) and we’ll work something else out.
Every $5 increment earns you a chance to own one of the 6 pastel firefighter portraits that Jessie made in response to the 2020 fire season.
The first 3 donations of $200 or more automatically receive the portrait of his or her choice!

Stretch Goal: The All Saints Mission church in Happy Camp was destroyed. So all donations beyond $600 will be sent to the Sacred Heart Parish in Fort Jones to help with recovery.

Timeline: February 29th- March 7th. New details on each portrait daily.

We’ve already raised $265! We’re on our way.

Updates and more info will be posted to Instagram on my account @catholiccurio if you want to keep up with our goal progress or like/share the content.

On a personal note: I’ve seen the overwhelming generosity of this small online community.

I can’t wait to see it again.

Some people have asked, why firefighters and why this particular fire?

The first question has to do with our family culture growing up. We were raised to love and respect these brave men and women. Mom would say, “Wave at the heroes” every time we drove by past a fire station. We’d pause whatever we were doing to pray the Guardian Angel prayer whenever we heard their sirens- asking protection over the fire fighters and to whomever they were headed. We also brought cookies to our local station on Christmas Eve. These are all traditions Jessie and I have both continued with our own families as well.

Tiny Dominic! This is 2017. The firefighters gave us a tour of the station on Christmas Even when we dropped off cinnamon rolls. They got dressed in their gear, showed the kids how to run an EKG, let them sit in the firetruck, and then as we were leaving got called away. It was so fun, engaging and dramatic. I welled up several times, unable to express my thanks for such generosity without my voice cracking.

The second question was really a prompting of the Holy Spirit.

Jessie said- I have created this art. Jessie asked- How can it help someone? When she put this out into the world, a friend responded. This friend had been looking for some way to help her Mom, a Happy Camp resident, repair an RV as a place to house a neighbor.

Match made.

If you can help, great. Thank you. Truly, thank you.

This is a worthy cause.

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