The Covid-19 pandemic has seen the emergence of a whole new wave of solidarity. Sister Monica from Peterborough, England and the Sisters from Cameroon tell us how they took the initiative in the face of need.
A message which choked me
Monica writes : – Yesterday I received a message – it was an urgent appeal for fabric, sheets, and pillowcases in order to make scrubs for the frontline staff at the hospital. I had been dubious about the Government’s message that there was a shortage of personal protective equipment but this request confirmed it was true.
I made an appeal for such items in the apartment block where I live, then set to by looking at what I had in my cupboards. I had been given a lot of fabric for a less urgent project and in the end, I filled three bags with material and donations from a resident to take to the collection point at one of the Catholic churches in Peterborough from where it would be sent on to a team of seamstresses.
As a reward for being so prompt in responding to the appeal, the Parish Priest asked me if I would like to stay and pray before the Blessed Sacrament for a while. I took the opportunity to pray for all who were working at the hospital, the families who had lost loved ones and those ladies who were going to make something out of the donations.
On returning to my apartment I cleaned my cupboard out. This had been on my “to do” list for a while. As I did so, I reflected on a quote from St Basil –
The food you have stored away belongs to the hungry.
The unworn garment in your wardrobe belongs to the naked.
The gold you have hidden away belongs to the poor.
Sr Monica Wyard fj, Peterborough, England
In Cameroon, the Sisters get down to it
Faced with the shortage of masks and the obligation to wear them since April 14 for all travel, the community of Mvolyé has taken up sewing to make the masks necessary for our Sisters and employees. Many seamstresses in the town are working hard to ensure that the whole population is supplied.
… while the students put their spare time to good use
Following the closure of the universities and high schools because of COVID 19, the Foyer Our lady of Africa in Soa has practically emptied itself. Most of the students have returned home. A dozen or so Chadians, however, have been unable to return to their country, and so have stayed behind.
As online courses are not yet available for them, Sister Ruthina, director of the hostel and a native English speaker, offered to give them English classes. They have accepted her offer with great appreciation and classes are held every day of the week from 9:00 to 10:30.
The Sisters of the Myvolé and Soa communities, Cameroon