Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Care in the community


I had a meeting last night to discuss the future of our soup run and today another meeting to discuss the future of our parish SVP conference.
During the Ann Roberts long illness I didn't really want to interfere but infact it has carried on by the remarkable people who devote an incredible amount of time and as I found last night and their money as well, to the needs of the poorest people in our city. The SVP has just run out of steam.

At the heart of any parish there has to be caring for those most in need, the soup run is remarkable, every weekday night two or three people make sandwiches, soup, hotdogs whatever and flasks of coffee for about 30 people. They never know if there are going to be 2 or 3 people or 50. Most of them don't drive so they tote bags and flasks down to the seafront, normally there are only two of them sometimes just one, we are going to try and get a few more people involved so people can have a day off or a cold without people starving.
The SVP I am going to try and restart with younger parishioners, it is pretty evident in our parish that we are not serving even our own parishioners as well as we should. We need someone who can work with the school where some parents are in serious need especially new immigrants. Everywhere nowadays there are parents with addiction problems, maybe more here in Brighton than elsewhere. We also have people who are supposed to be "cared for in the community" but in practice aren't. There are people who have long term mental health problems and people who need some "life style coaching", such as suggestions like, "you have been wearing that shirt for three weeks now ... " or I'll give you a hand to scrape the food of your floor, it is getting a bit squelchy isn't it?
Yesterday as well "Brighton Voices in Exile", a charity for immigrants, started using my basement as their office. I am afraid its a bit of cop out for me, previously I was using it for homeless immigrants but I thought it better after one or two of them had a brush with the police because of drug use in the street that we found an alternative use. Interesting, they were Muslims and never once abused my hospitality.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Don't you think it is significant of a malaise in the Church that your post on clerical dress should have received 35 comments, and this one about the future of the SVP in your parish, set in a deprived district of Brighton, should have receive only one: mine?