Discussing
Repair Cafes vs Throwaway Culture

Tamara Hill Murphy

Tamara Hill Murphy
February 2, 2017

By refusing to see objects—or people—as disposable, Repair Cafes embody a sacramental view.

Steve Fenster
February 2, 2017

I found the whole concept to be interesting and would like to extend the metaphor regarding people. One might think of a damaged object, rather than a problem to be discarded as an opportunity to improve the object and for expression. An example: Many years ago I had a guest at my home that was not the most stable person. She decided to open the door on the built in microwave oven. The problem was that she (in a not so passive aggressive gesture) decided to rip the handle off rather than push the nice little release button on the handle. Rather than buying a new oven, and having it installed I had a curved piece of exotic wood cut for the handle and recreated the push button with a bamboo chop stick topped with a little sphere from the same exotic hardwood the handle was made of. Cost me about $10 and a little time. A second example in the same home is when an Umbrella Cockatoo that I had for a while picked the lock on his cage while I was at work. He proceeded to chew up the build in oak desk legs and cabinet edges in the kitchen. That weekend I consumed a case of beer while I turned the chewings into decorations with a dremel tool. When I sold the house the buyers commented on how much they liked the custom woodwork. It occurs to me that we might be called to help damaged people in a similar manner, to make their injuries into strengths and assest.

Bette Sohm
February 3, 2017

We are one of the churches that house a Repair Cafe. It has been a wonderful experience, as we see that work of community happening. The volunteers sometimes change, as who is available from one session to the next may change, but the excitement and joy does not. We are thankful for the church member who brought this ministry to our attention.

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