30 YEARS OF PARISH SUPPORT
FOR BISHOP ETON SVP CONFERENCE
This September marked the 30th anniversary of the SVP Conference in this Parish. We celebrated a very joyful Mass on Saturday 28 September with past and present members and the families of deceased members. It was an appropriate occasion on which to thank the Redemptorist Community and parishioners for their prayerful and incredibly kind support. We are only able to carry out our work because of the generosity of this community. At the end of this article you will find a brief summary of the work carried out by the Conference over the last 12 months.
You may have noticed posters in the porch over the last 5 weeks advertising SVP Awareness Month. They are designed to give a flavour of the kind of work that we do. You will have seen that much of our time is spent visiting and befriending people in need, providing practical and moral support through this one-to-one contact. This may involve visiting residential care homes or older folk on their own at home, providing lifts to hospitals and supporting community projects. We find an increasing need to support local food banks as the faltering economy and changes to the benefit system push more and more families to the edge of coping with food bills.
We have been fortunate recently in that Frs. Tim and Richard have allowed us to use the Monastery as a drop off point for donations of food that we are able to distribute to local food banks. We are very aware of how much support the Parish offers to alleviate poverty in various areas of the world but we should really like to renew our efforts to help those in need in our immediate localities. In order to do so, we are to hold Harvest Masses at each Mass on Sunday 20 October. There will be baskets on the altar to receive any offerings of food goods - these will make an immediate and huge difference to the lives of many, many families on our doorstep. We hope this will not be a one off opportunity but might kick-start a fresh effort to support the food collections week by week. Items can be dropped off at the Monastery Monday to Friday 10.00am-6.00pm.
Review of our work over the past year:
A total of £8128.10. comprising
- monthly collections £7384.32;
- members' collections £413.78;
- other donations £330.
A total of £9611.45 comprising
- Help for families £6171.45;
- Asylum seekers £700;
- Prisoners' families (Angel Tree) £244.92;
- Youth camp and activities £550;
- Homeless £100;
- Twinnage £200;
- Mass stipend £20;
- Tithes £1625.08.
Families visited in their home:
- 25 visits to elderly in their home;
- 65 visits to elderly in residential homes;
- 1600 visits to people in hospital;
- 15 weekly visits to St. Anne's with aid for Asylum Seekers;
- weekly visit to food banks with food from Monastery :- Seel St, St. Annes and Bridge Chapel.
- 12 donations of furniture;
- 40 of clothes;
- 3 of electrical appliances;
- 32 of money;
- 10 of transport;
- 74 of food.