A Ministry of Service to Multi-Generational Groups


posterWhether you belong to the ‘baby boomers’ or generations x, y or z you are bound to be impressed by the passion and enthusiasm of Sr. Lesley M. Despathey, DHS as you spend time browsing her new place of ministry ‘Pourings and Passages’, a gently used books store and coffee house at 183 Main Street in Danielson, CT.

After years of service as a classroom teacher, elementary school principal, province treasurer and business office service provider for the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, Lesley was ready for a change of pace. And a change it was as she began to volunteer and to help out a bit with Mr. Jim Weigel’s bookstore project to benefit St. James Catholic School in Danielson.

Sister quickly became involved in setting up the space that is housed on the second floor of the Gerardi Insurance building and provided rent free by the owners who are parishioners of St. James Parish in Danielson. Working hand in hand with Mr. Weigel, her experience with school supplies, likes and dislikes of children and parents in terms of religious articles were quickly put to good use, and her keen sense of order and neatness led Lesley to spruce up and clarify display signs according to seasons and timely events/celebrations at the local and national levels. 

Sister DespatheySister DespatheySister Despathey, who has a gift for wielding hand tools and clear, colorful laminated signs, specializes in refurbishing and/or making per demand a huge variety of jewelry items. She also assures an ample supply of religious articles and has managed to convince sisters in her religious community to lend a hand at fabricating rosary beads. She is very much attuned to what is popular among the various age groups and uses her creative gifts to produce these objects via computer or strictly by hand. While Lesley is available to help as needed, you can set your clock by her regular hours of 3-5 pm on Wednesday of each week. Sister also will avail herself of table space to sell her wares at local arts and crafts fairs. She has also received home mission grants from the Daughters of the Holy Spirit to provide petty cash needed to purchase the materials for making jewelry and religious articles. All proceeds go directly to St. James School ,and since its inception in November of 2015, the shop has donated over $60,000 to the school. Lesley smiles as she speaks about this and adds, “Jim is so good and so well organized. He has a heart of gold and endless energy”.

Sister DespatheySr. Lesley who also works in the Province’s finance office on Tuesdays and Thursdays, dedicates the remaining three days of the work week to preparing her projects for the store since “this is a continuation of my educational ministry, what I do here helps the Catholic School directly”. She also offers her assistance on weekends and as needed at St. Joseph Parish in neighboring Dayville, CT where she sings in the choir and helps collect and deliver food baskets among other tasks.

The detailed guided tour of Pourings and Passages climaxes with a descent to the first floor where a special section has been set up for children; it even has the feel and fragrance of a primary grade classroom. There is something for every little one offering the colors, sounds and feelings that stimulate and encourage learning.

So, no matter your age, the next time you are in the area or in the market for some gently used books  and/or other at a stunningly low price, or just want to chat and enjoy a cup of brew and a fig newton, stop in. Your path may cross that of Sr. Lesley who will introduce you to her favorite ministry that blends all generations into one: that of the love of books , religious articles, bargain prices, good conversation and a joyful way of helping the local Catholic School.

You may contact Sr. Lesley at lesleydhs@yahoo.com or you may call the store at 860 774-1712. 


© Copyright 2016 Daughters of the Holy Spirit, USA Province
72 Church Street  Putnam, Connecticut 06260 USA  860-928-0891


For the passe

Director's Circle