Concerned about people in precarious situations, the parish of Tonneins (Lot-et-Garonne, France), launched “Operation Potatoes”. The well-inserted community of the Daughters of Jesus participates actively in it.
At the beginning of winter, during 3 or 4 Saturdays, parishioners are invited to sort potatoes and put them in 5 or 10 kg bags. These bags are then sold at the end of Mass or by word of mouth.
It was a parishioner who had this great idea, ten years old now, to get everyone involved. A farmer first lends his field and does the work of cultivation until the potatoes are ready to harvest. Then the volunteers step in. Our small community, as far as it is available, participates in this work. This year, there were about twenty of us, men and women from several villages.
What’s the idea behind this project?
The money collected makes it possible to organize:
– A meal intended primarily for people in precarious situations but open to all, with each one giving according to his possibilities. In this way, we learn to mix with and to get to know each other. This year, there was even a mother from Benin, a refugee, accompanied by her Sudanese Muslim neighbours, one of whom is severely handicapped. The meal was very convivial and ended with a singsong.
– A spring outing is organized with the same purpose in mind. Everyone is invited and the “potato money” allows us to pay for some of the participants.
– A pilgrimage to Lourdes for a few, either as sick people or as companions.
– A small gesture at Christmas, towards people who are alone or in need.
All this is thanks to a parishioner who is truly concerned for the poor and who tries to make all Christians sensitive to their situation.
“Operation Potato” is known to all the parishioners even if we have to admit recognize that it is always the same people who respond to the various requests. It should also be noted that Secours Catholique participates in some of these events.
For all this of experience, let us give thanks to God!
Les soeurs de Tonneins