Meet Mary Sunshine!

I woke up this morning with loads of details to get done before I leave for Haiti and no idea of what needed to go into my first blog. Lots of clothes to pack, emails to write, appointments to set up, travel plans to confirm and this “blog thing”. This is way out of my comfort zone, my spelling is terrible, there is no proofing it, and what do you write about?

Meet Mary Sunshine!

Mary Toohil, also known as Mary Sunshine, loves to hand knit dolls and today, just a couple hours ago in fact, her friend Linda Jozitis delivered to Betsy and me in Rye, NH 50 beautiful hand knit dolls for me to take to kids in Haiti. Linda brought me the pictures of Mary too.

Well, Mary stopped me dead in my tracks with her Comfort Dolls for orphans in Haiti. So I am sitting here with one of Mary’s dolls in my lap and feeling pretty comfortable myself.  Whatever else this day brings it won’t top Mary’s gift. Here’s the thing. Mary is 80 years old with a smile to melt any heart, spends her days knitting dolls for lots of needy kids.  In an Atlantic News article I just read about Mary, it was reported, “I just keep knitting, It keeps me busy and out of trouble” I haven’t met Mary but somehow she heard about Help for Haiti and that we were headed to Haiti. She has been working for about a month and today she delivered 50 gorgeous dolls for Jack Bickel and me to deliver to the kids at an orphanage we will visit in Cap Haitian next week.

Blogging is a piece of cake when there are Mary’s in this world. For those 50 kids, Thank you, Thank you, Thank you Mary! May God richly bless your day and I promise we will bring you back lots of pictures.

Jim Willey



  1. Outstanding!!!!

  2. Jim, Mary is doing God’s work as are you. Thank you for sharing your work and passion for Haiti. It is a beautiful thing to see the Holy Spirit beaming through the faces and body language of those happy, well-cared-for children. You were beaming yourself.

    A quote from Frederick Buechner applies well to you: “The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

    God Bless,

    John & Carol

  3. Absolutely beautiful, I can see the happiness on your face as well. You seem to have found your soul in Hati. I pray the hurricane passes it by. Take good care of yourself and the children Big Hug Barbara

  4. Dear Jim & Betsy –

    When I look into the faces of those beautiful Haitian people, I see pure Joy. You are making such a difference in this world.

    May your ministry be blessed with abundance and may you endure the journey:

    Isaiah 40:31 “…but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”


    PS: Those dolls are so great. What an amazing lady! I hope that’s me in my 80s!

  5. Jim,
    I love your new website….it is a knockout! Fun to read about Helping for Haiti and hear about lives being transformed.

    Looking forward to our collaborations


  6. Jim,
    I will make a contribution , but not via credit card. Please confirm both the address below and to whom the check should be made.

    Rich Raia

  7. Jim,
    I will make a contribution , but not via credit card. Please confirm both the address below and to whom the check should be made.

    Rich Raia

  8. Jim, really a good start on the blog. Spelling was fine (as far a I can tell?). Keep up the good work!!

  9. Our Jen Parent shared this “Mary Story” with us yesterday! Just read it and LOVE it! And I’m impressed with the blog….I feel the same way you do about it, but know I have to jump in at some point. If you find our Haitian sisters and brothers need anything out of the ordinary, please be sure to let me know. One never knows who knows who and who has what! Blessings on you and Betsy!

  10. Jim, you are one of the most amazing men I have every met. Your determination to do
    God’s will in Haiti was demonstrated on the two occassions that I traveled to Haiti with you. It brings back wonderful memories of what God will lead us to do if we just follow. All you have to do is look into the eyes of just one of these wonderful children to see God’s love. God Bless you and your love for the children of Haiti.

    Your Brother in Christ,


  11. Just discovered this site through Yahoo, what a way to brighten up my week!

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