More thanks, and a question or two

The following letter was sent today:

Sharing The Meal

To Serve One Another With Generosity And Joy PO Box 206 Leichhardt 2040

6 July 2008

Dear Father Clesio

We just wish to thank all the pilgrims who have so generously and thoughtfully contributed so much towards our “Sharing the Meal" here at St Vincent’s Redfern. It is because of such kindness that we are able to keep going. There are lots of disadvantaged people who come in and share each Tuesday and Friday morning – roughly about 100. People who would not have the opportunity of sharing … Continue reading

Thankyou, pilgrims

Sharing the Meal co-ordinator Kate Gavan was presented with a green bag this morning after the 9am Mass by Clesio Mendes and Joe Pelle. They told her that the World Youth Day pilgrims who attended St Vincent’s saw what was being done for the poor and wished to offer some support.

So impressed were the pilgrims with the Sharing of the Meal that they collected $1600 in loose coins and notes – the contents of the bag.

They also offered their assurance of continuing prayers for the poor, and for peace in our community.

Friends in Spain

Encomun is a Spanish collective of some 30 Christian communities from Madrid. Their blog is intended to serve as a virtual meting place for the communities. Intrepid translator, Joe C., has produced this English version of Part 2 of a recent article entitled WYD08 in Sydney and the parish of Redfern that the Mouse stumbled across during the week.

Many thanks for your support, members of Encomun.

It’s some time now, a couple of years, that I have been following the vicissitudes of a small Australian parish community, that of St Vincent’s in Redfern, a poor suburb … Continue reading

Saturday night mass

A newsflash just received from Michael G:

There was mass at St Vincent’s tonight with approximately 80 WYD pilgrims from Spain. The door was locked but three of us knocked on the door and managed to get in.

The mass was extraordinary, the sign of Peace was just like ours, the young people shared their ideas of the gospel spontaneously, and they even had a big dance around the altar for the final song.

During communion the priest went within the seats and gave the Eucharist. Everyone held onto it until the priest returned to his seat and devoured … Continue reading

An Excluded Faithful

Imagine the irony of this!  St Vincent’s Redfern is a small Catholic Church in the heartland of the Archdiocese of Sydney, which is in the control of Cardinal George Pell.   For years the loyal parishioners have been running a ‘Sharing the Meal ‘ Program which provides cooked, fresh and delicious meals for hundreds of marginalised people each week.  For over six years they have been asking the Parish Priests of the church for running water, maybe a toilet and even perhaps a sink.  Alas to no avail.

This week work began, without notice to the parishioners, the erection … Continue reading

Bishop David Cremin’s visit

Bishop David Cremin came to St Vincent’s this morning to show his support for the community and dedicate a photo of Fr Ted Kennedy mounted in the church foyer as a sign of welcome to all.

The bishop chose Naidoc Day in post-Apology Australia to visit Redfern, unveiling the picture of Ted as another gesture of the community’s recommitment to Reconciliation with Aboriginal brothers and sisters.

Aboriginal member of parliament Linda Burney last week said that many Aboriginal people regard that Apology in a manner similar to the "coming-down" of the Berlin Wall.

The community also wanted to make a … Continue reading

No meal for the Pope

The following is an excerpt from an email just received from one of the co-ordinators of Sharing the Meal. Is it right that the Neocats close down the Meal for WYD so they can conduct their catechesis classes? And how about proclaiming love & compassion from the pulpit in one breath and denying the marginalised & disadvantaged a meal in the next?

Dear All

Last Friday following morning Mass I approached Frs Clesio and Joe in the sacristy. I requested information re WYD Masses especially during the Pope’s visit on the Tuesday & Friday. These are ‘Sharing the Meal’ … Continue reading

Cause for celebration

Last Sunday the community celebrated a special Mass in honour of the 96th birthday of one of its members, Eileen. Photos may be viewed here. The following message of thanks comes from one of Eileen’s daughters: Dear all

Many thanks for the humungous effort you all put into making yesterday such a memorable and joyful event for Eileen. Eileen was deeply moved, as were we her family. It was wonderful to feel the joy of the Redfern community, and to know that we are capable of recovering a spirit of optimism untarnished by the tensions, hurt and so many … Continue reading