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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Linen service

Maryland congregation recycles hotel linens to local shelter

Some members of All Saints Lutheran Church in Bowie, Md., dropped in on the local Shepherd’s Cove Shelter last spring and asked: What’s your greatest need?

Staff of this 100-bed facility for women and children asked for towels, which get worn from use or go with clients when they leave the shelter.

Gail Trafelet, a member of the congregation’s Serve Team, said: “We’re always asking the congregation for things, but we can’t keep asking .... We wanted to provide for this need without diminishing the resources of the congregation.”

So Trafelet started calling hotels. “So far we’ve gotten very good sheets, blankets and more than 200 pillows—many with pillow protectors and some [that are] brand new,” she said. They were to receive towels this month.

Their chief supplier has been the Comfort Inn Conference Center in Bowie. “Franchise rules require that we rotate items every so often,” explained Cheryl Daum, the center’s executive assistant. “Instead of throwing them away, we’re glad to contribute them.”


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