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The Library at Bellwether Farm

From the early stages of planning, a room designated “Library” appeared on the drawings for the Grange, the central gathering building at Bellwether Farm. Intended to enrich the mission of the Diocese’s Camp, Retreat, and Education Center, its character and scope were not fully defined until three generous gifts were received.

After the death in May 2020 of the Rev. Nancy L. Roth, an author of 13 books and priest of the Diocese for over 30 years, her family offered books from her library to Bellwether because of her keen interest in the farm's development. Along with a monetary gift in Nancy's memory, 30 boxes of books soon arrived at the Grange. Similarly, the late Damon Hickey, retired Director of Libraries at the College of Wooster and a member of St. James, Wooster, made a gift of more than 15 boxes of books from the college and his own library. And last year, following the death of our treasured colleague, the Rev. Beth Frank, her family contributed a rich assortment of her books to the Library’s collection.

The sorting and cataloging were undertaken by Lynette Williams and the Rev. Dr. Brian Wilbert, aided by summer interns Madelyne Smith and Zachary Filippi. Gradually, a “browsing library” of more than 1,000 books took shape. This diverse collection includes works on theology, spirituality, social justice, and sustainable living, as well as fiction and nonfiction books that foster the joy of reading and the living of an interesting, engaged life. These are “Stay-On-The-Farm” books that a guest may “Browse … Enjoy During Your Stay … and Return to the Library.”

Other books, not part of the permanent collection, are designated as “Take-Away.” This is an ever-changing selection that guests may “Browse … Enjoy … and Keep.” As well, Take-Away books are part of the Bellwether Summer Camp program. Each camp cabin is stocked with donations from the Cleveland Kids' Book Bank to “Browse … Enjoy … and Keep.”

Located on the second floor in the Grange, the Library is a bright room with panoramic views of Bellwether's barns, fields, and gardens. It's a favorite meeting room for small groups and a quiet space for you to browse … find a good book … and read to your heart’s content!

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