Sturdy Roots

Living in Wartime
Memories of School Sisters of Notre Dame Recorded in Crisis

Care Packages

Most of Europe was devastated after World War II.  Essential items were scarce.  Mother Almeda Schricker asked the sisters in North America for help.  The School Sisters of Notre Dame in North America responded through the courageous leadership of Mother Fidelis Krieter (pictured at right).

The text of her letters express the simple gifts that exemplified sisterhood at a time of conflict. Relive these feelings through the excerpts from letters and chronicles by clicking on the links to the right.

The Munich Violin
There is a treasured violin that S. Suzanne Hornung has used for many years. It was first given to her violin teacher, S. Augustine Hamman. After her death it was given to S. Suzanne with the stipulation that she would care for it in a special way. It was a gift from our German Sisters, given to the St. Louis Province by Mother Almeda Schricker in 1950. It was their way of saying "Thank you" for all the Care Packages received during World War II. The "Munich Violin" is easily distinguishable because a tiny paper on the side of the instrument is marked "MUNICH." This anecdote was shared by S. Suzanne Hornung who played the Munich violin for the author.

Gifts from the Heart of Bavaria
In the mission chronicles of the School Sisters of Notre Dame of Bavaria as well as in the letters to Mother Almeda Schricker from the superiors, the many packages from America and Sweden were very gratefully mentioned again and again.

The following is taken directly from the sisters' correspondence. Gratitude was expressed for:

Flower [sic], potato flower [sic], ham, canned sausage and meat, salad oil, lard, rice, bouillon and soups, rolled oats, baking powder, dry pudding, seasonings, sugar, powdered milk, tea, coffee, cocoa.

Sweets, chocolate, cookies, cod-liver oil, glucose, aspirin and other medications, adhesive bandages. Toys, stationery, laundry soap, soap and soap flakes, toothpaste,

Sewing material, wool, brushes, shoe polish, cleaning rags, towels, toweling, handkerchiefs, baby clothes, clothing for children and adults, shoes and stockings, sweaters, pajamas. Material for habits, veils, and rosaries were also provided.

Former American prisoners of war who were provided with meals by the Sisters in Fussen sent 20 pounds of soap and detergent, thread and yarn, two dozen handkerchiefs, ten meters of white woolen cloth, three woolen shawls, 20 toothbrushes, sweets and cocoa. (Bavarian Chronicles)

The following gives specific directions for Care Packages to SSNDs in North America: Source is the Milwaukee Chronicles - June 23, 1947, Mother Fidelis Krieter to S. Annunciata. Care Packages were to be sent to SSNDs in Bavaria, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Rumania.

One package every two months to missions with fewer than ten sisters; one package every six weeks to missions with ten to twenty-five sisters; one package every four weeks to missions with twenty-five to thirty-five sisters; and two packages every four weeks to missions with more than thirty-five sisters.

Living In Wartime
Memories of War
Practical Advice
Background of War
German Sisters' Stories
Sister Imma Mack
Motherhouse Bombing
End of WW II
Care Packages
50 Years later
Vine & Branches Prayer

Care Packages Letter Excerpts

© Judith Best, SSND - 2010 - School Sisters of Notre Dame
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