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In 1999 the Sisters of St. Mary were asked to include animal husbandry as part of their novitiate program for young women from the Anglican Diocese of Northern Malawi. From 2000 to 2003 the sisters raised dairy goats, producing milk and cheese. The African sisters currently raise sheep and goats for meat on their 9-acre farm, and chickens for meat and eggs.

Sister with Goat and Drum

In 2003 the American sisters moved from metropolitan New York upstate to a rural, agricultural area and made the decision to continue their micro-farm enterprise in solidarity with their African sisters' farm which raises food for their ministry to local orphans. Our convent in Greenwich, NY, was completed by 2004 and a barn for small ruminants was built in 2005.

In 2004 we were given a start-up herd of cashmere goats and made the transition from dairy to fiber production, raising award-winning goats and producing cashmere roving and yarns. We keep a small organic garden for our own food production, and process vegetables, berries and fruit in the late summer. We kept bees for a few years, and have raised chickens and sheep. In the summer we raise Hereford steers as "sustainable pasture management" and for meat. Our hand-spinners and other fiber crafters create yarn and a variety of

products for sale in our small shop. St. Mary's-on-the-Hill products support the work and ministry of the sisters in America and central Africa.

The sisters' primary work is prayer with the farm providing labor for hands and hearts. The fiber work draws the community together in a common enterprise -- part of our Benedictine ethos. Stewardship of the land and animal husbandry are seen as facets of a larger life lived to the glory of God.

Demonstrating Spinning

The sisters offer cashmere goats for sale in the fall. For more information about goats available as breeding stock or companion animals, click the links below.

Adult breeding does for sale.
2012 cashmere buck kids for sale.
2012 cashmere doe kids for sale.

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Combing Cashmere 1 Combing Cashmere 2 Combing Cashmere 3 Combing Cashmere 4

For more information about the Community of St. Mary, contact the Mother Superior. For questions about this Site, contact the Web Mistress.